Energy-saving home improvements
Homeowners anticipating the chill are being encouraged to prepare their home for cooler months and save on their energy bills.
Experts from Quotezone.co.uk have identified eight ways to improve home energy efficiency.
Ofgem announced an energy price cap reduction this winter*, but over one in three households are still expected to pay more for their energy bills.**
Although the price per unit of energy is falling, there’s an increase in the daily standing charge, plus last winter’s universal energy support is not being continued.**
This combined with the wider challenges of the cost-of-living crisis could lead to millions of households struggling to pay their bills this winter.
To lower energy bills, people are encouraged to make as many simple home modifications as they can, like switching to LED bulbs, adding insulation, and draught-proofing windows and doors.
Households can also track their energy consumption with a smart meter and compare different energy and gas suppliers for the best prices and deals.
A survey by Quotezone.co.uk showed 47% reduced their energy use with a smart meter – with 38% seeing a reduction in bills.***
Quotezone.co.uk price comparison expert Helen Rolph said: “Saving money on energy bills starts from making simple adjustments to our everyday habits, like turning the thermostat down a few degrees or not leaving appliances on standby.
“But in order to lower your energy consumption in the long run, it’s worth considering some upfront investments in efficiency that will help future-proof your home.
“It looks like despite the energy price gap falling, it won’t reflect on energy bills and many people will actually end up paying more this winter.
“Now is the perfect time to undertake some energy-saving home improvements to gear up ahead of the cold weather and reduce your bills just in time for winter.
“Some of these upgrades may be a bit more costly, but it’s certainly worth investigating and researching what government support is available.”
Here are Quotezone.co.uk’s tips for making your home more energy efficient:
1. Install insulation
The walls and roof of a house are typically responsible for the majority of heat loss. If your insulation is insufficient, there are support schemes available to help reduce the costs of upgrading. Insulation helps to keep your home warm in winter and cool in summer, ultimately lowering your heating and cooling costs and saving you money all year round. You can add insulation to external walls, the ground floor, the roof and loft.
2. Draught-proof windows and doors
One of the easiest ways to reduce energy waste is to draught-proof windows and doors. This helps to improve insulation and reduce the amount of heat lost through leaks. There are various options available when looking to draught-proof a window or door, such as magnetic and wiper strips, self-adhesive draught seals, and silicone sealants. These can all be installed by either a professional or by yourself.
3. Switch to LED light bulbs
Using LED light bulbs is an excellent way to lower energy consumption. Compared to traditional light bulbs, LED light bulbs use roughly 75% less energy and have a longer lifespan. Say the average house has approximately 30 lightbulbs, switching to LEDs from incandescent 40-watt bulbs saves £4 per bulb per year*, that’s £120 a year per household, when switched on for just an hour a day.****
4. Upgrade windows
Upgrading to energy-efficient windows can decrease heat loss in winter. Double and triple-glazed windows have thicker glass for better insulation and thermal resistance. Another option is secondary glazing, which adds a slim-line window to your existing ones without requiring a full replacement.
5. Install a smart meter
Around 32.4 million smart meters have been installed so far in GB***** and everyone should be offered them by the end of 2025. These smart meters provide valuable information regarding the amount of energy consumed by your household, the time at which it is used, and the associated cost. This data can be utilised to make necessary adjustments and save money on energy.
6. Switch to energy-efficient appliances
Although upgrading older appliances can be costly, if you invest more in your appliances now then you can make long-term savings in the future. The most important thing to keep in mind when upgrading appliances is to check their energy labels to find models that use the least amount of energy.
7. Upgrade your boiler
About half of your annual energy expenses are spent on heating and hot water. That’s why it’s crucial to have an efficient boiler. The newer models use much less energy than the older ones, which can lead to significant savings in the long run. It may be wise to start researching low-carbon heating options, such as a heat pump, since fossil fuel-based heating systems are likely to be phased out in the future.
8. Install solar panels
Investing in solar panels can be expensive, but it’s one of the most efficient methods of making your home more energy efficient. By harnessing solar power from the sun, solar panels can significantly reduce your energy costs. Despite the UK’s unpredictable weather, there is still an ample amount of solar energy available to make solar panels a worthwhile investment for your home.
Quotezone.co.uk’s findings are based on a randomised survey of 600 respondents across the UK, which represents a margin of error of approximately 5% at a 95% confidence level.
This article is intended as generic information only and is not intended to apply to anybody’s specific circumstances, demands or needs. The views expressed are not intended to provide any financial service or to give any recommendation or advice. Products and services are only mentioned for illustrative rather than promotional purposes.