New findings published today by Energy Saving Trust reveal that although nearly all UK homeowners polled (96%) are concerned about their home energy efficiency, almost one in five (18%) are not currently taking active steps to improve the energy efficiency of their home.
Lockdowns across the UK have increased people’s home energy use, putting many people under financial strain – with recent research from Citizens Advice showing that more than half a million households have fallen behind on their energy bills since last February.
As the cold weather continues, Energy Saving Trust is providing energy saving tips as part of the ongoing Big Energy Saving Winter campaign, highlighting that it’s not too late for people to take immediate steps to cut their energy bills and get the financial support they may be eligible for. .
Big Energy Saving Winter, a partnership between Citizens Advice, Energy Saving Trust, and the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), provides simple but significant ways for householders to make immediate savings on their energy bills. From small changes to more extensive home improvements, there is a wide range of options to meet the needs of all budgets.
In the UK, 22% of our carbon emissions currently come from our homes – so as well as helping people save money on their energy bills, improving the energy efficiency of homes will reduce carbon emissions and have a positive impact on addressing the climate emergency.
Laura McGadie, group head of energy at Energy Saving Trust, said: “With people around the country continuing to cope with the challenges and financial impacts of the pandemic, there has never been a more important time to ensure that people are aware of how to make simple changes in their homes to help reduce their energy bills.”
Energy Saving Trust continues to be committed to supporting households across the country at this time, and we hope our tips on how to make small changes will benefit everyone.
By undertaking these small changes, we can all make a difference including having a positive impact on the environment.”
Energy Saving Trust’s top five tips to help reduce energy bills and carbon emissions are:
- If you turn down your main thermostat by 1 degree, you can save around 10% on your energy bill. If everyone in Great Britain turned their thermostat down by 1 degree, we would reduce energy bills by £670 million, while saving 3.5 million tonnes of carbon dioxide (CO2) per year. However, do make sure your home is warm enough during cold weather to ensure you don’t damage your health. The ideal temperature range to set your thermostat is 18-21 degrees.
- Replace your bulbs when you can with energy efficient LEDs – on average it could save about £40 a year on bills. If everyone changed their remaining bulbs to LEDs, Great Britain would save £1.1 billion on our collective energy bills and cut out 1.8 million tonnes of CO2 emissions per year.
- Get your timing right. As most of us continue to work from home, if you are taking advantage of not having to commute by getting up later, set your heating to come on later in the morning. If you have a timer on your central heating, set it to come on only when required and if possible get a smart meter installed, which is estimated to help reduce a household’s electricity use by 2.8% and gas use by 2%
- Check your eligibility for the Green Homes Grant scheme. If you live in England, there is help available through the UK Government’s Green Homes Grant, which offers homeowners and landlords money towards the cost of installing more substantial home energy improvements. Other schemes are available in other parts of the UK:
- Scotland – Home Energy Scotland
- Wales – if you are finding it a difficult to keep your home warm or cope with your energy bills, contact the Welsh Government Warm Homes Nest Scheme
- Northern Ireland – contact Northern Ireland Energy Advice
- Draught-proofing windows and doors and blocking cracks in the floor and skirting boards can save around £20 a year on energy bills.
Energy Saving Trust’s new research also showed that:
- 94% of those polled understood the link between making our homes more energy efficient and reducing carbon emissions
- 86% of respondents saw insulation as important in relation to energy saving
- 62% of respondents said that both saving money and saving energy are of equal importance to them
- 19% saying saving money was more important, and 16% saying saving energy was more important.
Big Energy Saving Winter provides resources to support people with their energy bills by checking if they are eligible for grants and discounts, as well as providing advice on where and how to switch energy supplier to reduce bills.
Visit bigenergysavingwinter.org.uk to access free resources to help you check, switch and save.
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Notes to editors:
About Big Energy Saving Winter
Big Energy Saving Winter is brought to you by Citizens Advice, Energy Saving Trust and the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS).
Big Energy Saving Winter will provide householders with resources and information on how to check, switch and save on their energy bills this winter.
Big Energy Saving Winter runs from 2 November 2020 to 31 January 2021.
About the research
- 41,120 views
- 1,164 starts
- 826 completions (respondents)
- Poll ran from 1 December – 18 December 2020
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.