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How To Save On Electricity Bills: Tips That Work

You can likely save money on your electricity bill. Here we will discuss several well-known methods plus some tricks you have probably never heard of. Some are cheap and easy to apply, and others are more expensive and complex, but all of them will help you with your bills resulting in an eventual profit.

Take Advantage Of Off-Peak Tariffs

No one wants to pay higher electricity bills than they have to, especially during an energy crisis. It could be cheaper to run your appliances at certain times of the day. Here’s what you need to know about peak and off-peak energy.

A few power providers charge less for electricity at specific times of the day or night. Off-peak hours are typically quieter periods when demand is low, usually between 10 pm and 8 am. The name for this charging system is “time of use tariffs.” The bill depends on what time of the day you use electricity.

However, in the UK, most energy suppliers set a flat rate, so using appliances during the day or night costs the same.

So, if you can save money by using appliances at night, it depends on your tariff. Tariffs, like Economy 7, are designed to save you money using appliances overnight when electricity costs and demand are less.

You can benefit when on this type of tariff by using washing machines and dishwashers when at the cheaper rate. You can likewise save by charging your devices, such as smartphones and laptops overnight. Electric vehicle owners will also benefit by charging their cars at night.

So, make sure you know your off-peak and peak hours and try to use most of your appliances in the off-peak period. Make sure your electricity supplier tells you when your meter changes from the low tariff to the other.

Also, remember that the meter may stay the same when the clocks change every March and October.

If you have storage heaters, make sure you know how to store heat at night and discharge it during the day.

If off-peak tariffs aren’t suitable or available for you, there are other ways to cut energy bills:

  • When possible dry clothes on the line instead of in the dryer
  • Don’t charge your devices longer than necessary. When they are at 100%, unplug them.
  • Unplug devices completely instead of leaving them on standby.
  • Draught-proof doors and windows
  • Use solar-powered lights in the garden.

Cheap Battery Storage

If you have an off-peak tariff, you can invest in a large-capacity battery, charge it at night (when electricity is cheaper), and use it as a source of electricity during the day. However, this will only be worth the investment if your tariff is drastically cheaper at night.

If There Is A Cheaper Company, Consider Changing

How long has it been since you considered changing your electricity company?

It is always good to know the different rates to know if your company is offering you a competitive price. If you spend a little time analysing other offers and comparing them with your current company, you may find cheaper options.

The Future Is In Renewable Energy

Investing in green or renewable energy benefits the environment and leads to significant electricity savings.

Currently, there are several types of renewable energy systems that you can install in a home:

Thermal solar energy uses sunlight to heat water, and thus, you avoid using electricity or gas for the same purpose.

Solar electric energy uses sunlight to obtain electrical power. This energy can go directly into the home (the cheaper system) or be stored in batteries for later use. Solar combined with batteries is a more efficient but more expensive system.

Residential Solar Panels
Residential Solar Panels

Wind energy uses the wind to generate electricity

Geothermal energy uses the temperature of the deepest layers of the earth for the house’s air conditioning. This is not an expensive system to install during the construction of a house, but it requires digging a very deep hole in the ground, which can be costly if a home is already built.

Like geothermal, aerothermal systems are used for air conditioning and are more efficient than conventional systems because they use energy from the outside air. The installation is much more straightforward than geothermal.

Use Energy-Efficient Appliances

If you are considering changing an appliance in your home, buy one with a high energy efficiency rating. These perform their specific jobs (heating, cooling, washing) but use less energy than others with a lower rating.

High energy efficiency appliances cost more, but as they require little energy to perform their function, ultimately, you will save money.

Cook Efficiently

The kitchen is the primary source of energy consumption in most homes. The fridge and freezer account for almost 20% of an electricity bill since they are always connected to the current and working.

But that doesn’t mean there aren’t ways to save money in the kitchen. You can employ several practices to save money on your energy bill effortlessly.

Cooking rarely with an oven and more frequently with a microwave will consume 75% less energy.

Practice batch cooking. For example, spend an afternoon cooking for the entire week. In this way, you turn on appliances less often.

As we have already said, the refrigerator and freezer are the appliances that consume the most in homes, and their energy efficiency significantly impacts the electricity bill.

Here are several ways to save with the fridge and freezer:

  • Think about what you want to take out before opening the fridge, so you are not standing staring inside with the door open.
  • Do not put hot food in the fridge. Wait for it to cool down. Apart from spending less, this allows you to take better care of the motor.
  • Ensure there is no ice in the freezer. An iced-up freezer uses much more electricity.
  • Adjust the temperature to 4 or 5ºC for the fridge and -15ºC for the freezer.
  • Try to place these appliances at a reasonable distance from the wall and, if you can, do not place them near other devices that emit heat, such as the oven or a dryer.
  • If you have a very old fridge or freezer, it may be worthwhile to replace it. To find out, you just have to buy a cheap meter to quantify the consumption for a few days and make the annual estimate (consumption/days analysed x 365).

Pay Less For Lighting

As you know, light bulbs impact the electricity bill, and controlling their usage will help us save.

If a bulb has burned out, buy an LED type since it uses the least electricity and lasts the longest. Although they are more expensive than older types, they are becoming less expensive, and you can find them at affordable prices.

You may have light bulbs that are not LED and wonder if it is worth changing them before they burn out. In this case, it will depend on the use. The more hours of light use, the faster you will recover the investment and the more advisable it is to change.

When choosing light bulbs, keep in mind the warmth of light, indicated by the letter K for Kelvin. Although it is a personal choice, warmer tones (3,000 K) are recommended for the living room and bedrooms, and whiter tones (4,000 – 4,500 K) for the bathroom or kitchen.

Don’t Overdo The Heating And Air Conditioning

You’ve probably heard it a thousand times, but we’ll repeat it.

Heating and air conditioning are big consumers of energy and money. Each degree you increase in the heating thermostat represents an increase of around 7% in the electricity bill.

The temperatures that we usually recommend are the following:

In winter, the heating should be between 19 – 22ºC during the day and between 15 – 17ºC at night.

In summer, the air conditioning should be at 24 – 25ºC.

If you use a fan, remember it’s no use leaving it on when you’re not there because it doesn’t cool the room!

Smart Appliances

Other solutions that help you control the climate in your home and the cost of electricity can be home automation devices such as air conditioning controllers or smart thermostats.

Save On Washing Clothes

We often set the washing machine at 40 or 60ºC by default to ensure it washes well.

The issue is that it is always necessary to wash with hot water if you remove any difficult stains before putting the clothes in the washing machine. The same goes for clothes without noticeable dirt – cold water will do the job adequately.

Voltage Optimisation

Voltage Optimisation will lower your electricity bills and carbon footprint.

Due to standard European measures, our appliances work at 220/230v. To supply customers with 230V, the National Grid provides around 245V – guaranteeing if the supply fluctuates, it is still adequate.

Voltage optimisation optimises how much energy is supplied to your electrical appliances, resulting in instant savings.

Typically, savings are between 8% to 15%, so if your yearly electricity bill is around £12,000, you can save around £1800 a year.

Domestic voltage optimiser
Domestic Voltage Optimiser

With your electrical equipment operating at the proper voltage, the equipment’s lifespan will improve, so you’ll gain further savings on not replacing equipment frequently. Voltage optimisers are small devices that you can operate remotely.

Voltage regulation delivers enhanced power stability and will save you money. However, it is essential to remember that its financial benefits vary significantly depending on the amount of electricity you use and the grid’s current voltage. A site survey by an experienced electrician is the first step when considering voltage optimisation.

Enjoy the savings!