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Making sure that any household budget covers the basics is important for everybody, but for people who have more specialised individual needs and requirements it can be an even greater priority.
Fortunately energy providers are actively helping all their customers to understand bills and make savings wherever possible. Energy tariffs such as the new “Nest Intelligent Thermostat” tariff fromnpower are powerful tools that can help you save money and the environment by cutting back on energy usage.
Here are five practical ways you can make a difference in your own home.
1. Remain temperate
Turning down your thermostat or manual radiator valve by just one degree could save you money on your energy bills but this isn’t the only way it can be used to make your home more efficient. New devices, such as the Nest Learning Thermostat, are revolutionising the way we control and regulate the temperature of our homes. It is a new type of heating programmer and thermostat which programs itself and can also be controlled remotely with a smartphone, tablet or laptop.
As part of its working process it finds a temperature that is energy efficient for your central heating system and domestic environment, thus saving energy and costing you less money. You can find out more about the thermostat and its associated tariff on npower on their website.
2. Don’t stand by
Standby mode is something we all take for granted but it still uses power to keep a device switched on ready for when you want to use it again. Games consoles, TVs and entertainment systems, microwaves, coffee makers and kitchen appliances - all of these items cost you money on wasted energy if you don't turn them off.
3. Bathe in savings
Many people like the convenience of a shower over a bath because it suits our modern busy lifestyles – but it’s also a great way to save energy and water. As you’ll use less water than in a bath, you’ll spend less money heating it up and this translates to numerous savings in your home.
You may also want to consider installing an electric shower which heats cold water from your system itself to deliver the perfect temperature – something which may be more energy efficient that having to heat the water in your boiler to power your shower for just a few minutes every morning.
4. Keep it under wraps
Everyone knows that a badly insulated home will mean heating systems are less efficient and waste money. It's obvious that leaving outside doors or windows open in cold weather lets the heat out, but many people ignore the fact that badly insulated walls or having no loft insulation is just as bad.
Most insulation processes aren't disruptive and don't require redecoration or any other extra expense. Older homes can be especially prone to losing heat and benefit most from new insulation and you may even be able to get governmental help to finance energy-saving home improvements like these.
Images via Upsplash
5. Don’t overdo it
Everybody is different and each home will have individual requirements where energy is concerned so creating a personalised schedule can adapt energy use to match the way you live your life. For instance, the Nest Learning Thermostat mentioned at the start of this article notices when you're away from home and automatically turns itself down so you don’t waste energy. This allows your home to adapt to the current situation to remain as eco-friendly as possible and requires little or no user input from you.
Of course, there are plenty of ways to work out how much energy you use – from smartphone apps to online tools. Whichever you opt for, the ability to identify patterns in your energy consumption makes it far easier to work out how you make significant savings and benefit the environment.