Please note that this page contains information and links most relevant for people living in Northern Ireland.
As households across Northern Ireland face further increases to energy bills, Energy Saving Trust outlines steps to help people save money and manage costs.
From 1 July 2022, the majority of households across Northern Ireland will see additional increases to their gas and electricity bills, as higher energy prices from the regulated suppliers come into effect. Energy Saving Trust is providing energy saving tips and outlining the support available to help households understand what the increases will mean for them and how to take steps to manage and minimise their energy bills.
Making several small changes around the home, such as turning devices off standby and reducing draughts, could save hundreds of pounds annually. Turning your thermostat down by 1 degree could offset the anticipated fuel bill increase by £130 in an oil heated home.
|10 everyday energy saving tips
|Annual cost saving - oil
|Annual cost saving – gas
|Draught proof gaps around windows and doors by fitting foam strips, plastic seals or brushes
|Top up the insulation of your hot water cylinder and any exposed pipes
|Turning your central heating room thermostat down by 1 degree
|Keep your shower time to 4 minutes
|Saving per person £35
|Saving per person £45
|Annual cost saving
|Avoiding standby and turning appliances off when you’re not using them
|Turn the lights off when leaving a room
|Use your washing machine on a 30-degree cycle instead of higher temperatures
|Avoid using a tumble dryer for your clothes during the summer months: dry clothes on racks inside where possible or outside in warmer weather
|Only fill the kettle up with as much water as you need. Also consider fitting an aerator onto your existing kitchen tap
|Only run your dishwasher when it is full to reduce the amount of water you use. Also reduce your dishwasher by one run per week for a year
Power NI has increased its electricity tariff by 27.5% from 1 July, in addition to a 21.4% increase announced in January 2022. 56.1% of Northern Ireland’s population are Power NI customers and those on credit meters will see an average increase of £204 per year, while those on a prepayment meter can expect a £199 increase on average.
Gas bills are also rising as a result of high wholesale energy costs, which make up around 74% of the average consumer bill. The regulated domestic gas suppliers, firmus energy and SSE Airtricity, are also increasing their prices by 24.54% and 42.7% respectively. SSE Airtricity’s increase means that the average domestic gas bill will increase by £373, to £1243 per year from this month.
While oil is not regulated, the price consumers are paying for home heating oil has been increasing steadily in the past 12 months. The current average price for 500 litres of oil is £524.44.
The UK Government recently announced an emergency package of support measures to help households with their bills. Households across Northern Ireland are eligible to receive a £400 energy bill discount this autumn. Northern Ireland’s most vulnerable households are also due to receive a one-off payment of £650 in two instalments, with the first being distributed this month.
Angela Gracey-Roger, programme manager, Northern Ireland said:
“We know this is a difficult time for households facing the energy and cost of living crisis, as well as the additional uncertainty in Stormont. The good news is that there is some financial support available and simple actions we can take at home now that add up to help reduce and manage energy bills.
“We urge the decision makers to ensure that households in Northern Ireland receive the support they are eligible for so that no one gets left behind.
“We must also not lose sight of the urgent need to progress towards decarbonisation. Saving energy is more cost effective than generating energy and we want to see action taken to improve the energy efficiency of our homes, to reduce reliance on fossil fuels for good. This is how we will increase energy security, reduce costs and address the global climate emergency for the long term.”
Customers who are worried about paying their energy bill are encouraged to access the Northern Ireland Energy Advice line, via the Housing Executive – Community. For more information on the support available through the Northern Ireland Sustainable Energy Programme (NISEP), visit the Utility Regulator’s website. For information on switching, householders should use the Consumer Council NI’s price comparison tool.
More information on energy saving, home efficiency improvements, financial support and NISEP can be found here.
For further information, including interviews or comment on energy saving tips and advice for households, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Oil savings are based on a typical three-bedroom, semi-detached oil heated home with an 89% efficient oil boiler and average oil tariff of 9.2p/kWh and electricity tariff of 30.9p/kWh; correct as of July 2022.
Gas savings are based on a typical three-bedroom semi-detached gas heated house, with an 88% efficient gas boiler and average gas tariff of 11.4p/kWh and electricity tariff of 30.9p/kWh; correct as of July 2022.
Note, please do not combine savings figures as they have a dynamic impact on each other.
 This saving includes all appliances, consumer electronics and chargers that have been left on standby mode or have been left on and not in use.
Energy Saving Trust
Energy Saving Trust is an independent organisation dedicated to promoting energy efficiency, low carbon transport and sustainable energy use. We aim to address the climate emergency and deliver the wider benefits of clean energy as the UK transitions to net zero.
We empower householders to make better choices, deliver transformative programmes for governments and support businesses with strategy, research and assurance – enabling everyone to play their part in building a sustainable future.