10 tips to see how you can save over £600 and keep your home warm this winter

Posted 19 January 2024

London's cold temperatures and rising living costs have everyone looking for ways to stay warm without breaking the bank on energy bills. Here are some tips to help you save up to £648* and keep your home cosy this winter:

  1. Keep furniture away from radiators and heaters to feel warmer

Placing furniture directly in front of a radiator or heater can block the heat from traveling around the room, ultimately reducing the overall warmth of the space. Remember it's important to maintain a safe distance between furniture and radiators to prevent potential damage to the furniture. A standard recommendation is to keep at least a 1-foot distance from the radiator to prevent furniture from melting, catching fire, or drying out, warping, and cracking.

  1. Closing doors and windows

This one may seem a little too obvious, but that's also why it's easy to overlook. Leaving doors open is a fast way to let heat escape a room and will mean you're more likely to turn the central heating up in the evening. Simply closing the doors will make your space feel a lot warmer. And of course, the same applies to windows too.

At the base of the door, between the door and the threshold, you can also get a draft excluder to keep the heat in. Hinged flap draft excluders are exceptionally well suited for this job. You could save up to £210 a year if you have a professional come in and draught-proof your home, but you can easily fit draught-proofing strips yourself. 

  1. Clothes Washing

Wash the majority of your clothes at 30 degrees instead of 40 degrees to potentially save £24 a year, as suggested by consumer association Which? Reserve 40 or 60 degrees for bedding and towels for a thorough clean. Additionally, reduce your washing machine use by one run per week for a year.

Avoid tumble drying your clothes—opt to air dry them on racks indoors or outdoors in warmer weather to potentially save £70 a year. However, be mindful of mould and humidity build-up when drying clothes indoors.

  1. Swap baths for the shower

Keeping your shower time to just 4 minutes could save a typical household £95 a year on their energy bills.

  1. Kitchen hacks

Popping the kettle on several times a day is a very common occurrence in British households. Filling the kettle from the cup means that you are only boiling enough water for the cups of tea you are making, and not using any more energy than is needed, by doing this you can save £36 a year by only boiling the amount of water needed in the kettle.

You can also save £14 a year by only running the dishwasher when full and cutting down to one run per week. 

  1. Heating

Consider replacing gas central heating if you have it. Avoid the use of temporary heaters wherever possible, these tend to use more power than pre-installed systems.

Where you need to use plug in heaters use oil-based radiators, rather than fan-coil systems. Check for any draughts and gaps in windows and doors, the Energy Saving Trust estimates this could save £45 per year.

  1. Switch off standby mode

You can save around £55 a year by remembering to turn your appliances off standby mode. Almost all electrical appliances can be turned off at the plug without upsetting their programming. People can save a further £25 a year by simply switching off the lights in rooms that aren’t used. 

  1. Smart Meters & Gadgets for accurate bills

Use a smart meter to monitor what energy you’re using and show how much it costs.

If you watch this in real-time you can start to learn what the biggest energy users are and use them less or find more efficient versions. If you don’t have a smart meter yet, contact your energy provider. They should be able to arrange an appointment or let you know when they’ll will be installing them in your area. This won’t cost you anything

  1. Bleed Radiators

Check your radiators to assess whether it is heating up properly, as if there are cold spots present then you may need to bleed it. When radiators have cold spots present, this is a sign that there is air trapped inside them. This trapped air stops the warm water from properly circulating your radiator and results in taking longer to heat up your room.

  1. Stay active

If you’re able to do so, keep as active as possible. If you’re working from home, move around at least once an hour and try to avoid sitting for long periods. This’ll boost your circulation, and help you to stay warm and healthy. 

Find out more tips in our Energy Saving Tips booklet!

Download and read our Energy Saving Tips for some of the most effective approaches to reducing your energy bills.

Support available in Newham

There are many services that offer support across Newham, but it can be difficult to find out what you need. see what support is being provided across the borough and beyond, visit Newham Council’s Cost of Living Response and UK Government.

*The Energy Saving Trust has updated its savings tips in line with the new gas and electricity prices. Households in Great Britain who pay for their gas and electricity by direct debit, the unit rate increased to be capped at 28.62p/kWh for electricity, with a daily standing charge of 53.35p, and 7.42p/kWh for gas, with a daily standing charge of 29.60p.

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