What's in this article?
You can earn money, save it or steal it. Our 'how to' articles on energy theft were critically panned so here's a few simple tips on how you can reduce your gas bills and see significant monthly savings.
Replace your ancient boiler
Old isn't gold when it comes to boilers. Your twenty-year old boiler may well be the most reliable household appliance you've ever bought but just because it's not having regular breakdowns, doesn't mean it's not costing you a small fortune.
According to the Energy Saving Trust, 55% of your annual energy bills are spent on heating - so the wastage an inefficient boiler could be causing is not to be underestimated. It'll be bleeding you dry, twice as fast as you're bleeding radiators.
If your boiler is over 10 years old, look into it's efficiency - essentially how much energy it's actually making use of and turning into heat and hot water for your house. You're likely to be shocked. Upgrading to a new modern combi boiler is likely to save you between 20-35% on your gas bills.
If you're harbouring a relic from another time in your airing cupboard and upkeeping a boiler that's over 15 years old and likely G rated (running under 70% efficiency) then take a look at the potential annual savings below.
With most new combi boilers running at a minimum of 92% efficiency, it's easy to see where your savings are coming from. You'll be saving a monthly amount that won't go unnoticed.
It's worth noting that these savings are based on combi boiler switches and that larger family households with more than one bathroom and an unquenchable thirst for hot water will likely be better off with regular boiler, that won't need to consistently heat water on demand - an inefficiency like that would soon cancel out those savings.
Get smart, with a thermostat
Taking total control over your home heating is a guaranteed way to reduce gas bills and modern smart thermostats allow you the ease of control from your phone. If control over when and where you heating is on in your home isn't something you're regularly aware of, there's a good chance that you can shave a hefty chunk off your monthly gas bill just by installing a smart thermostat - and making use of it, of course.
Isn't a smart thermostat just a gimmick?
Fun as it may be to flick your boiler on and off whilst you're in the queue at Gregg's, the uses of a smart thermostat go beyond novelty. Just buying one and having it's corresponding app installed on your phone will make you considerably more aware of how the energy in your home is being used. You'll be able to make sure your boiler isn't working away in an empty house, have it come on just before you're due home from work or reduce the temperature in a particular room where an unloved relative resides.
Plus, there's Boiler Plus
Fortunately, the trusty old government have introduced new regulations to make sure that any UK homeowners having a new boiler installed are receiving helpful energy saving measures as standard. As well as dictating all newly installed combi boilers should meet a minimum standard of 92% efficiency, one or more of the below measures should also be included with all new boiler installations, as of April 2018.
|Flue Gas Heat Recovery System||Just as interesting as it sounds. A device capturing heat that would otherwise be wasted and using it to heat your system again, clever.|
|Weather Compensation||An outdoor thermometer communicating the outside temperature to your boiler, so it can adjust accordingly and be more efficient.|
|Load Compensation||Similar to weather compensation but measuring the ambient temperature inside your house and altering the amount of hot water that's delivered to your radiators.|
|Smart Thermostats/Heating Controls||One of those fancy devices that allows you control your home heating from apps on your smart phone/tablet etc - most likely the consumers preferred option.|
Switching to a new combi boiler and making use of a smart thermostat are no doubt the most effective methods to reduce your gas bills quickly but they do come with the initial upfront cost. Fortunately there are some small changes that you can make that won't cost a penny.
Don't have the cash for a new boiler installation? Consider monthly payments, your energy savings may even pay for it.
- Put a jumper on - your dad's right, it works.
- Make sure the heat in your house, stays in the house. Seal any gaps in your doors
- Boilers aren't always to be trusted - average room temperature is 18 degrees whilst default settings can often be at 20 degrees or more
- Evict family members with a cavalier attitude towards energy usage
- Check every radiator in your house - completely switch off any in lesser used rooms
If you've exhuasted the free methods and your boiler is looking worse for ware, you can compare quotes online from as little as £1,300 - all in.