By April this year, the average dual fuel energy bill could rise by up to 50% annually due to massive price increases in wholesale gas. When this issue first emerged, it caused major industrial disruption and the bankruptcy of 28 UK energy suppliers. A few months later, the situation has triggered fears of a major cost of living crisis for millions.
So, with the future still very uncertain, many of us are asking the same question: what can be done to cut the cost of heating?
Whilst we wish the answer was as simple as installing a Smart Thermostat, the reality is that the government may have to get involved to limit the damage. This isn’t inconceivable given they’ve already attempted to improve domestic heating with programs such as the Green Homes Grant Scheme. Some of the actions suggested that the government could take include:
Direct financial support for consumers
Loans to energy suppliers
Suspending the 5% VAT on energy
Defer payments of energy costs
Move green levies on energy to general taxation
What can consumers do to cut the cost of heating?
Price rises might be inevitable, but there are a few tips that we’d recommend for cutting the cost of heating even slightly:
Ignore unhelpful advice
There have been several reports in recent weeks about patronising advice that some out-of-touch energy suppliers have provided to their customers. From hugging pets to eating ginger for warmth, the ridiculous suggestions offered by the likes Ovo and E.On among others has been highly unhelpful. Indeed, for many, this advice has been useless at best and distressing at worst.
Optimise your heating controls
Check your current heating systems to see if there’s any way to cut out as much potential energy wastage as possible. For instance, Wiser controls offer Smart Modes that can help improve efficiency, such as Eco Mode. Meanwhile, adjusting your schedules slightly, especially at night and while you’re usually out, and lowering the average temperature by as little as one degree, also has a proven impact.
Look for energy-efficient alternatives
If you’re willing to purchase new products for long-term savings, then there are a few energy-efficient upgrades that we’d recommend. Of course, a Smart Heating System is a proven energy saver, but swapping old light bulbs for LEDs or utilising Smart Plugs can also reduce excess energy use.
Make savings on unused appliances and water use
Own devices that are left plugged in when not in use? Many still draw power from the socket, so turning them off at the mains can help you save that bit more energy. Meanwhile, reducing water usage by doing just one less laundry load or dishwasher cycle can help you to lower bills as well.
Try to switch suppliers (when possible)
The go-to solution for reducing energy bills has often been to use a comparison site to switch suppliers. But with so many suppliers going bust, many households have been redirected to generic tariffs with bigger companies. The recent crisis has also led some switching sites, such as Look After My Bills, to pause their activities until there is some resolution.
Once the situation becomes clearer, it could be worth researching to see if you can find a better deal in the form of a new supplier or tariff.
We hope this advice has helped bring some relief to the current cost of heating. For more information on energy savings with Wiser Smart Thermostats, Click Here.