Gas saving tips

Turn Your Thermostat Down
Turn down your thermostat

By turning down your thermostat by just a few degrees you could save up to 10% on your heating bills. By wearing warmer clothing and losing these few degrees you will save money, you will probably not even notice very much of a difference in the temperature. At night or when not in the house, your thermostat could be set even lower to make additional savings.

Insulate Your House Correctly

Ensure your house is properly insulated to avoid heat loss through the winter. Heat flows naturally from warmer areas to cooler areas, so insulating correctly can prevent from the heated warm air in your house escaping outside. Poorly insulated roofs can let the cold in and let the expensive heating straight out. Some homes may have been designed with particular attention paid to energy efficiency but the majority were not so adding insulation can help reduce energy bills.

You may be able to add insulation yourself if the area is accessible or you may like to hire someone to do it. The main areas that will require insulation are your attic roof and the door to the attic, areas under floors above unheated areas, for example a garage or a basement, walls of a heated basement or extension. It is important if construction your own house or building an extension that the correct levels of insulation are used.

For older houses with not much insulation on the outside walls, a good trick to keep the heat from your radiators inside the house is to place heat reflectors behind them. You can buy radiator foil, or simply use ordinary kitchen foil with the shiny side facing towards the back of the radiator.

Until the end of November 2012, British Gas are offering free insulation for home owners. You don’t even have to be a British Gas customer and it could be worth up to £1,000 in materials and labour plus save you hundreds a year. For anyone 70 or over or who receives eligible benefits (see the list on the British Gas website) British Gas could help with the cost of clearing your loft – just let their advisor know on the call.

Give British Gas a call on 0800 084 6974 to arrange a survey.

Or visit their website: www.britishgas.co.uk for more information.

Draw Your Curtains
Draw your curtains

At night and especially during the winter or when it is cold, drawing your curtains can help retain a considerable amount of heat. Properly fitted curtains can act as great insulation for your windows and reduce heat loss through the glass – particularly large windows and glass doors. If your curtains are not keeping in the heat in the winter, it is even worth considering investing in a new thicker, heavier set as you are sure to save money on your heating costs in the long run.

Maintain your heating system
Maintain your boiler

An old and poorly maintained heating system will not be as efficient as it could be and you could end up wasting energy and money. You should ensure your boiler and heating system is working correctly before the winter sets in. If you wait until your boiler breaks down, it can be very expensive. Your energy company may have an insurance you are entitled to or can take out whereby an engineer will come out and service your boiler to help prevent a breakdown and to keep it working efficiently.

If you have a very old water heater, you may benefit from replacing it with a more modern energy efficient model. The investment will pay off in the long term by cutting your heating costs. In general, boilers have a lifetime or between 10-15 years if properly maintained.

Double Glazing
Get double glazing

Double glazing can seem expensive to pay out for initially but once fitted, can mean great savings on your heating bills. A large amount of heat is lost through your windows and doors and opting for double glazed windows can help keep this heat indoors.

Efficient Cooking
Use correct sized pans for cooking

There are a few easy ways to save energy when cooking which can also speed up your time spent over a hot stove. Always use the correct size pan and when heating water only use the amount you need so the gas is not burning unnecessarily to heat the excess. If only using a small pan, then use a smaller burner, this saves on gas and will not damage your pans by the flames burning up the side of the pan. Boiling water in the kettle first will save the time the gas needs to be on and putting a lid on with help it come to the boil quicker.

Switch Supplier

You can save money on your gas if you switch supplier as not all of the gas companies offer the same deals. Therefore, it is worth spending a few minutes investigating if you could save money on your energy expenditure. Which? Switch can help you find the best supplier for free and will even provide advice to make switching as easy as possible. Which? Switch helped households save an average of £237 a year between 1 June 2010 and 31 May 2011.

Which? Switch also offer fantastic advice on why you should switch and also which suppliers have increased their prices. Visit www.which.co.uk to find out if you can save money today.