Five ways to bring down your bills this summer
By Rachel England Monday 30 June 2014
It’s easy to worry about your energy bills in winter when it’s cold outside: the boiler’s cranked up, hot baths are the order of the day, and you spend your evenings in front of the TV dreaming of sunshine and sandy beaches. In summer, we use much less energy. But even though it’s warmer and we don’t rely on heating and hot water so much, there are still things you can do to bring your bills down.
Tweak your boiler
Come summer most people have turned their thermostats right down, so if your boiler is still humming away pumping heat to your radiators, give it a holiday and turn it off! Houses do a good job of retaining heat from the sun, so chances are you won’t even miss those two or three hours of superfluous central heating.
And while you’re at your boiler, turn down the hot water thermostat a couple of settings to limit the maximum temperature of showers and baths. No-one wants a scorching hot shower after a sweaty day in the sun!
Dry clothes outside
Tumble dryers are massive energy drains. Now the weather can be trusted, hang clothes outside to dry instead. You’ll be saving energy and giving your clothes a thorough airing – it’s a ‘summer breeze’ scent no dryer sheet can replicate! Worried about smelly summer clothes? Find out how to keep your clothes fresher for longer.
Make the most of natural light
Use the summer sun to your advantage. During the day, keep blinds and curtains drawn to keep the house cool, but as evening draws in throw them wide open and let your rooms soak up as much natural daylight as possible, thus negating the need to turn the lights on.
Invest in insulation
It’s a rare thing indeed when it gets so hot we Brits start complaining about the summer, but it does happen nonetheless. When heatwaves strike, it’s tempting to plug in fans and air-conditioning devices, and cooling appliances such as fridges and freezers go into overdrive. Consider insulating your house instead. This measure is usually associated with keeping the heat in during winter, but in the summer months it works to keep heat out, too. It’s a year-round investment and one that’ll help reduce your energy bills whatever the weather. Read our handy guide to roof and loft insulation.
Get out and about
Remember back in winter how you’d dream of summer activities and al fresco excursions? Now’s the time to put your plans into action and make the most of the warmer weather and longer days! The more time you spend out and about the less energy you’ll be using at home, and when winter rolls around again you’ll be content knowing you made the most of it while you could.