Energy saving tips for self-isolation

Lights on? Kettle boiling? TV blaring? Our energy-saving tips for self-isolation

Now that we’re home all day every day, the amount of electricity and gas we use is likely to increase. Between watching 15 different TV box-sets, cooking up snacks for the little ones and pumping up the heating to make it nice and cosy, we’re sure you’ll be looking for ways to save money.

Here are a few SMARTY tips on how to be more energy efficient; some are quick and easy, while others may take a little thinking about:

Stop re-boiling the kettle

How often have you boiled the kettle and forgotten about it? By the time you go back to make a brew, the water’s not hot enough, so you boil it again. Get out of this habit right now. Boiling a kettle uses a lot of energy for such a small thing – according to Npower it costs 2.5p every time you boil. So make sure you’re only boiling enough water for what you need. If the kettle’s full to the top, you’re only making yourself wait longer for your tea and wasting electricity in the process.

Wash your clothes at 30 degrees

Washing your clothes at a lower temperature will save you energy and money, and is perfectly effective for an average washing load. If your washing machine has an eco setting, why not use it? A shorter cycle on a lower temperature will use up less power. And, you’ll get your housework done quicker!

Turn things off

An oldie but a goodie. You’re probably sick of shouting after housemates, partners and children to turn off the lights when they leave the room, but it really is a good habit to get into. Anything electrical that you’re not using should be turned off or it will be costing you money. Get used to switching lights off when you leave the room, not leaving things plugged in and on charge constantly, and turning the TV off when you’ve finished watching it.

Don’t heat empty rooms

Even though the warmer nights are on the way, you may want to keep things cosy. But remember to use the valves on each individual radiator to turn off the heating in any unused rooms.

Use energy saving light bulbs

Switch all of your 40+W light bulbs out for 8W energy-savers if you can. This will help reduce your bills as you’re using less power to light your home. Simple.

Don’t boil water on the hob

Now, we know we said that kettles use a fair bit of energy for what they do, but when you need a pan of boiling water for pasta, rice, or potatoes, it’s more efficient to boil that water in your kettle than on the hob. It will get to the boil much quicker in a kettle and cost you less. But again, make sure you only boil the amount of water that you need – it should just cover the food you’re cooking.

Use a laptop instead of a desktop computer

Did you know? Laptops use up to 80% less energy than desktop computers. So where you can, choose a laptop over a desktop.

Take regular meter readings

The best way to stay on top of your energy bills is for you and your supplier to know exactly how much energy you’re using. When you supply regular meter readings to your energy provider they can accurately work out your bill, otherwise it will be based on an estimate. It’s not unheard of for suppliers to inaccurately bill people for long periods of time, and then end up handing the customer a massive bill that they can’t afford to pay.

Shop around for a better supplier

People often forget that energy is one of those utilities you can shop around for. It doesn’t matter which supplier you‘re currently with, there are plenty out there who can offer you a better deal. Plus, there are loads of different energy comparison sites to play with, so switching to a cheaper supplier is very easy. You often don’t even need to speak with your old supplier either.

Smart meters… One for the future

This may not be something that can be implemented immediately, but once the world has gone back to normal, why not think about getting a smart meter installed in your home. A smart meter sends all of your usage details straight to your supplier, meaning they will always have the most up-to-date and accurate figures for billing. Smart meters also give you the ability to look at your consumption in real-time and see how that translates to cost. Kerching.

Well, we hope these tips and tricks will help you keep your energy costs on the down-low during self-isolation.

  • SMARTY Team
  • March 28th, 2020