Don’t be an energy Scrooge ….be energy wise!
You can cut the kilowatts at Christmas without spoiling the sparkle! Be Energy is a user-friendly, interactive, eLearning programme that will help your employees to understand what energy is, how the use of energy impacts on our environment and how they can use less energy at home and at work to save costs and to create healthier businesses and a healthier planet.
Posted on 04 December 2017.
Meanwhile, here are some ideas on how you can minimise your energy bill over the festive period – and beyond - without losing any of the magic or fun!
1. Buy energy-efficient decorations
It’s still possible to have twinkling fairy lights without sending your electricity bill skyrocketing; simply chose an energy-efficient option that features LED globes or fibre optics and remember to turn them off overnight and when you are not in the room. If you plan to decorate your garden as well as your home, it makes sense to invest in some solar-powered fairy lights that won’t add to your electricity bills.
2. Be wise when it comes to gift giving
If you are thinking about giving an electrical appliance as a present, use the energy rating label to compare and choose energy-efficient appliances. The more stars, the more efficient the product. Each additional star can represent a reduction in energy use of 10 to 30 per cent depending on the type of appliance. The Energy Rating Label also provides the estimated annual energy consumption of the appliance, usually in kilowatt-hours (kWh) per year. For the greatest savings, choose a model with low annual energy consumption.
3. Wise warming!
With all those lovely Christmas jumpers to wear, you can definitely turn your heating thermostat down! Reducing your room temperature by just one degree Celsius could cut your heating bills by up to 10%. You can monitor and control the temperature throughout your home more accurately by installing room thermostats that could help to cut your bills further.
4. Talking turkey
If you are in charge of cooking Christmas dinner, it’s a good idea to cook several items at once so as to save energy. When cooking on the hob, you should always use the right-sized pan and ring for each job and keep the lids on your pans as much as possible to reduce heat loss.
And when using the oven, keep the door shut as much as you can and make big batches of food whenever possible to improve your energy efficiency.
Other ways to save energy in the kitchen include defrosting food overnight rather than microwaving it and ensuring warm foods cool down before placing them in the fridge.
5. Watch your water
Your water cylinder thermostat should be set at 60 degrees Celsius. You should therefore turn it down if it is higher than this.
If you have a programmer, then it makes sense to set the hot water to come on only when required rather than all the time.
You can also avoid wasting energy by fitting a hot water tank insulation jacket and make further savings by only boiling the water you need in your kettle, and de-scaling it from time to time.
6. Closing up
To avoid wasting energy at Christmas, you should keep the windows closed whenever possible, particularly when you are generating heat by cooking, and check for draughts around both the windows and doors. At dusk, it is also a good idea to close your curtains to stop heat escaping through the windows.
7. Turn it off
Always remember to switch electrical appliances off standby when you've finished using them, and only charge laptops and mobile phones when you need to.
Remember too to always turn off the lights when you leave a room, especially overnight.
8. Fill it up
If possible, fill up the washing machine, tumble dryer or dishwasher rather than running them for half loads.
One full load uses less energy than two half loads so it is worth waiting until you can fill the appliance before starting the cycle.
10. Going away?
If you plan to be away for Christmas, reduce the chance of burst pipes by keeping the central heating at between 12oC and 15oC, insulating exposed pipes, leaving the loft hatch door open to allow warmer air to reach the cold tank and turning off the water supply to outside taps.