Seven measures to ‘immediately’ reduce energy bills and save money

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Compared to last year, Toolstation said 73 percent of people surveyed have more worries than ever before about the cost of their bills, while another 85 percent of homeowners polled are worried about keeping their heating on. A further 82 percent said they are going to delay putting their heating on for as long as possible in a bid to save money.

To help households, Toolstation asked plumbers and eating engineers to share their best tips for what households can do to “avoid” expensive bills this autumn and winter.

1. Check pipes

The experts explained: “Hot and cold water pipes that are exposed to the cold should be lagged to prevent winter freeze-ups. 

“Pipes that are particularly vulnerable include outside pipes as external pipework is likely to freeze in winter, pipes in lofts and all hot water pipes.”

2. Draught-proof

According to the pro’s, now is the perfect time to draught-proof and insulate the home. They explained: “Draught-proofing around windows and doors is a very inexpensive way to reduce heat loss.

“Draughts are caused by cold air forcing its way into the house through gaps in the roof, up through floors, through vents or cracks around windows and doors, and then forcing its way out.”

“Draughts are caused by cold air forcing its way into the house through gaps in the roof, up through floors, through vents or cracks around windows and doors, and then forcing its way out.”

3. Light a candle

If you can’t find where a draught is coming from, Britons should light a candle and hold it in front of their doors and windows.

Move around the edge of the flame and the flame will flicker at the point where the draught is coming in.

4. Check the flow rate of your boiler

The experts continued: “This is the temperature at which the water leaves the boiler to travel round the heating system. 

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“It doesn’t need to be more than 55 degrees. If you find the radiator symbol on your boiler and turn it down – you can check your operating manual too. 

“For every 10 degrees you reduce your flow rate it can save six to eight per cent on your bills, again according to the Heating and Hotwater Industry Council.

5. Adjust the thermostat

If you find you are constantly adjusting the thermostat, turning it up or down, it is best to find a constant temperature to keep it on.

This can help keep the house warmer for longer as well as reduce bills.

6. Consider thermal curtains

The experts said: “Consider putting thermal curtains in front of any external doors to keep heat inside.

Placing rugs around the home can also help to keep the warm air in, especially on wooden or stone flooring.

7. Check the hot tap

The professionals said: “If you add cold water when you use the hot tap you can adjust it on your boiler by checking for the hot water symbol on your boiler – it’s usually a tap symbol. 

“You can lower the temperature to a point where you don’t have to add cold water. For every 10 degrees lowered you can save three to five per cent on your bills according to the HHIC.”

Households can also consider a keyhole cover or a letterbox excluder which can help to prevent cold draughts entering the home.

The experts also said to avoid multi-light fittings as they use more energy. Instead, consider taking some of the bulbs out and seeing if the light is still good enough.

Toolstation spokesperson, Greg Richardson, said: “These measures might not seem much but added up they can help to bring down household bills immediately.

“One of the reasons we launched our Energy Skills Bills campaign is to show what small measures households can take to save money and show them how much they can save.”

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