Cut running costs this winter with these 6 energy-saving tips

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Sponsored post by Aodhan O’Donnell

Whether working from home or managing the running costs in the office, understanding how to save energy is essential at the end of 2021. Increasing energy prices have meant we have all felt the squeeze from our utility bills. Here we suggest some no or low-cost tactics to help you save money.

Turn the thermostat down by a single degree

The recommended temperature for a comfortable room is 21 degrees, and we often heat our rooms much higher than this. For each degree we reduce our thermostat, we can save £60 a year in a standard home. In a large business, these savings could be even higher.

Turn off your appliances at the socket

It might sound like something from a horror film, but there are vampire appliances in your home bleeding energy even when you think they are switched off. A toaster, for instance, continues to use energy close to the amount when you are making toast, even when it is left unused. Going around your home and switching off electrical items at the plug could change all of this.

If you are concerned about switching off your TV at the socket and missing out on your recordings, you can also get a socket that switches off and on with a timer.

While a single appliance won’t make a significant difference, it is possible to add up to over £35 a year on your heating bills with some effort.

Charge your phone before bed and use your laptop battery

Most people have a habit of putting their phone on charge before they go to bed and keep it charging all night. Equally, a lot of us work with our laptops plugged in. Both these behaviours will add to your energy bills. 

Whether at home or in the office, charging your battery until it is full and then unplugging it will save you money. Keeping these items plugged in costs you more than is needed.

Wear layers

When we work at the office, we are used to the relatively high temperature for comfort, which means when we work at home, we feel the cold more. Rather than matching the heating levels from work, you might want to wear layers instead. Putting on a jumper or wearing thicker socks can do a lot to reduce your reliance on central heating. You could even rock your favourite fluffy slippers at work.

Lighting

Natural light is much better for our mental wellbeing, no matter where we work. The more you can get into a space, the better – and with the additional benefit of allowing you to turn off the lights.

If this is not possible, you might want to change the bulbs you use. LED light bulbs might cost more when you buy them, they will last longer and use less energy, and it will reduce your bills enough to be worth the return on the investment.

Switch providers

Comparing the energy prices for your business or home is one way to make the most significant differences. When every penny counts, you do not want to be overpaying where you do not need to. Consequently, taking the time to use a comparison site could be the best way to save money. 

While home energy tariffs can vary, business energy tariffs are often complex and difficult to unpick. There are different meter types, tariff rates, deposits, terms, and other charges to consider. While this complexity is a challenge, it is also an opportunity to save with the right advice.

Switching to your new supplier has been made simpler in recent years. Making the switch through a site means the process is managed for you. Your consultant will ask questions to help understand your business needs and deliver the best prices. They will approach suppliers to see the best terms and conditions with your permission. Once all this hard work is done by the site, you can instruct them to change. 

Energy-saving is simple

Saving money around our home and at work is made simple when reducing utility bills. We have all fallen into bad habits, such as keeping appliances on standby or sticking with the same supplier long past a good deal has finished. 

To become energy-efficient, we need to make small choices, such as smart sockets to switch off our devices at the wall and LED light bulbs for all the sockets. The biggest saving will come from switching suppliers; the greatest difference will come from combining all the strategies.

Aodhan O’Donnell is the founder of Power to Switch, an independent energy comparison tool based in NI and ROI.

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