It’s Cold Homes Week, Age UK’s campaign to end the rise in deaths of older people during winter. Lots of older people live in fuel poverty, so it can be difficult for them to spend money to ensure that their home is energy efficient. With that in mind, we share our top 5 energy saving tips that don’t cost a thing.
Use your timers
Set the timers on your boiler to only put the heating and hot water on 30 minutes before you get up. Also keep one room at 21 degrees, which is an optimal temperature for keeping warm. That way, you can save money by turning down your radiators in other rooms and just keeping the main living area toasty.
Close your curtains
Close your curtains at dusk, just as the sun sets. This will stop heat escaping through the windows when it’s dark. It’s also worth checking for draughts around windows and doors, and plug the gaps if you find any.
Set your cylinder
If you have a hot water cylinder, set it to 60 degrees Celsius. You can usually find your thermostat between a quarter and a third of the way up the tank. The best thing about this energy saving tip is that you won’t notice a thing.
Check that you’re on the right energy tariff
If you’ve not checked your energy tariff in a while, you could be paying more for your electricity and gas than you need to be. Check with your supplier to see if you’re on the cheapest plan.
Switch energy suppliers
If you are on the cheapest tariff with your energy supplier and you’re still paying too much, run a comparison and switch energy suppliers. Make sure you do this at least once a year, as energy prices and tariffs are constantly changing.
These free energy saving measures are good to save a few pounds, but there are other ways that can save money and keep older people warm. Age UK are campaigning for the government to reform its energy efficiency schemes to prevent excess winter deaths. The charity is encouraging people to take a selfie with a lit candle and post it on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram to remember to 40,800 elderly people that died from the cold last year. To find out more, visit their website.