Published on October 17th, 2015 | by Pete0
5 Simple Tips To Save Money On Your Heating Bill
Around this time every year a battle commences in our house, an age old war for control of the thermostat. I’ll make my argument for the heating to say off “It’s only September! Think of the cost” whilst my wife will attempt to force me to live in a furnace by retorting “I’m so cold though, and it’s been off since March so it’ll average out”. Energy prices in the UK are some of the highest in Europe and the drop in cost of wholesale prices isn’t fully filtering through to household bills, which further complicates the debate on when the heating should be put back on.
I am married to someone who gets cold very easily and I’m a huge softie so usually the heating goes on sometime around mid-October as a compromise. However, as a father of a young child the past two years has seen the heating go on in September and those extra few weeks of the heating really does add a fair chunk to the gas bill which often sees me cut back on other things to keep a lid on outgoings.
Many of us feel we have to shave some pounds from elsewhere in our household budget in order to feel financially comfortable putting on the heating but do we have to? There are ways to save money on your utility bills the whole year through so you don’t feel guilty about putting the heating on in September – or even August if you are particularly susceptible to the cold! Here they are:
Switch! – It’s not ground-breaking advice but you’d be surprised at how few people actually do it and how much you could save if you shopped around for the best tariff. Many tariffs carry exit fees but some of the deals out there will more than cover those losses and if you use a cashback website you might cover up to 50% of those fees. Alternatively, negotiate with your current supplier – they might have a tariff to match the best on the market or might waive the exit fee if you’ve been a customer for a long time. If you don’t ask…
Go electric – Switching to an electric heating system like the modern solutions available at Verismart Heating can be a cost effective way of warming your home as all of the power used goes into producing heat. Not only are they more energy and cost efficient they are low maintenance, have a greater dispersal of heat than conventional central heating systems and are better at maintaining your chosen temperature further eliminating waste and saving you more money.
Shut that door! – And open that window!
Keeping doors shut, especially to scarcely used rooms, will help trap heat and rooms will warm quicker meaning you don’t have to have the heating on for as long nor have the thermostat as high. Also, opening a window for up to an hour each day can really help cut down on bills. Opening a window for a while lets out the moisture from drying clothes inside, taking baths or showers, generally running the tap or just from breathing and replaces it with cold, dry air which is quicker and cheaper to heat.
Get creative – Get the kids involved and make some fun draft excluders to add a splash of colour and personality to a room, stop heat from escaping and keep cold air from getting in. They’re surprisingly simple to make and can be fashioned from almost anything. You could save on average £50 a year if you fully draught proofed your home including plugging up gaps around windows and doors. Potential savings from being able to turn the thermostat down could shave another £60 off your annual bill.
Get toasty with your roasties – Warming comfort food can be as good as an extra jumper or a nice cuddle on a cold day and you can’t beat a jacket potato with a buttery centre, loads of beans and melty cheese. Save some money by throwing a bunch of potatoes in the oven when you next do a Sunday roast. Leave them in the oven with the door open once you’ve finished to benefit from the free heat and to let them cool. Once cooled, wrap them generously in cling film, pop them in the freezer (where they’ll keep for up to 6 weeks) and give them 5 minutes in the microwave when you want one. A quick, easy, hot lunch or dinner in minutes and you’ve saved wasting all that energy making them from scratch.
With the average gas bill up to £50 more expensive per month during the winter than the summer just a few small changes can rack up enough of a saving to put your heating on a little earlier and avoid any disputes about how many jumpers it’s acceptable to wear before admitting the cold has you defeated and turning up the thermostat.