Dual fuel energy tariffs: What are they, and why should you get one?
12 August 2020 | OVO Energy
If you get your gas and electricity from two separate energy companies, you’ve probably noticed that they’re always trying to persuade you to get both your fuels from them on a dual fuel plan.
So, what are they going on about, and why do they care? And why should you care?
What is 'dual fuel'?
A dual fuel plan or tariff is one where you get both your gas and electricity from the same supplier, on the same contract. It’s good for the supplier because they get the income from persuading you to take their gas as well as their electricity (or their electricity as well as their gas).
But even better, it could be good for you, too. Many people find these tariffs more convenient and time saving, as you only get one bill and there’s only one dual fuel supplier to deal with if you have a question or problem. In today’s ultra-busy, multi-tasking world, anything that saves you time has got to be a good thing.
You can usually also get extra discounts for signing up to a dual fuel tariff – and anything that saves you money has also got to be a good thing too.
Are dual fuel energy plans cheaper?
Check out the UK’s many energy suppliers and you may indeed find that getting your gas from one supplier and your electricity from another is the cheapest deal.
Having said that, most energy providers offer their customers a dual fuel discount. This alone can make dual fuel a quick and simple way to reduce the combined cost of your gas and electricity bills.
The discount will usually appear as a percentage taken off your bill, which your dual fuel supplier deducts each month or at the end of a year.
As always, doing a little research to track down the best dual fuel deal is your best bet. Check out our useful guide to help you compare energy suppliers – and explore our range of affordable green energy plans to find the right one for you.
What are other benefits of having a dual fuel plan?
Life goes at quite a gallop sometimes. And that makes having a dual fuel energy plan much simpler – because you’re getting both your fuels from the same provider.
With dual fuel, there’s just one of pretty much everything. One bill. One Direct Debit. One point of contact. One telephone call should anything go wrong.
You only need to send one email if you’ve got any questions. And there’s only one company to inform if you’re moving home or switching your bank account.
With only half the usual hassle for something that’s often a bit of a drag, you’re left with more free time for the fun stuff!
Am I on a dual fuel contract already?
If you get both your fuels from the same supplier, but you’re not sure whether you’re actually on a dual fuel contract, the easiest way to find out is to check your energy bills or statements. If they don’t seem to show that you’re on a dual fuel deal, call your supplier to find out, and ask whether you could save money by changing to dual fuel prices.
If you currently get your gas and electricity from two different suppliers, you’re certainly not on a dual fuel contract.
Do all energy suppliers offer dual fuel tariffs?
As of August 2020, there were more than 40 different suppliers offering both gas and electricity. If you’re convinced a dual fuel plan is the one for you, check out a couple of different options to help you decide which one to go for.
OVO has a range of energy plans to suit your budget and help you lighten your carbon footprint – including dual fuel options. Why not take a look?
Will I get the same gas and electricity with dual fuel as I would on a single fuel contract?
Yes. You’ll get exactly the same gas and electricity delivered to your home. The only difference is that you’re getting them at a lower price because the energy supplier is thanking you for letting them supply both your fuels.
Can anyone get a dual fuel contract?
Anyone who uses both mains electricity and mains gas can switch to a dual fuel contract. If you use just electricity, or electricity in conjunction with oil, solid fuel or bottled gas, it’s not possible to sign up for dual fuel.
How can I switch to a dual fuel energy tariff?
If you’re not already on a dual fuel plan, it’s pretty easy to switch – especially if you’re only adding one fuel to your existing supplier.
If you can only get the best deal on dual fuel prices by switching both fuels across to a completely new supplier, it’s still a quick and easy process.
Start by comparing the prices of all the dual fuel suppliers in your area. Here at OVO, getting a quote is a cinch. Just have a recent bill to hand from your current gas and electricity supplier(s), so you know what you’re comparing the quotes with, and then enter your postcode to get started.
The most accurate way to compare prices is to check your kilowatt hour (kWh) use. You can find it on gas and electricity bills from your current energy supplier(s). Simply type your kWh figures into the relevant box, and you’ll be able to see a very precise comparison of all the dual fuel rates and discounts on offer.
When you’ve found the best dual fuel deal, you’ll just need to enter a few personal and bank details. There shouldn’t be any long-winded paperwork, and your new dual fuel supplier should take care of everything else for you. The only thing you’re likely to notice is cheaper bills!
How else can I cut my energy costs?
If you’re already on a dual fuel contract, or you can’t find one that would save you money, here are some other cost-cutting suggestions.
Use less energy
The best way to use less energy and reduce your bills is to make sure your home and all your electrical appliances are working as efficiently as possible.
If you insulate your roof and walls, improve your heating system and take other steps to avoid wasting energy (see below), you can save around £300 a year1. You’ll also cut your home’s carbon emissions by around 1.5 tonnes – so you’re helping the planet, too.
Here are 10 ways to become more energy efficient:
- When you boil a kettle, only use as much water as you need
- Turn appliances off at the wall – don’t leave them on standby
- Use energy-saving light bulbs
- Defrost your freezer regularly
- Fill that cavity! Cavity wall insulation can cut around £115 off your heating bill each year
- Get draught excluders for outside doors, windows and letterboxes
- Replace all your old windows with double glazing – it could save you around £135 each year
- If your boiler’s more than 15 years old, look into replacing it with a new A-rated condensing boiler
- Slip an insulating jacket on your hot water tank – you could save around £35 a year
- When using your washing machine, never set it higher than 30˚
For more handy tips, check out our ideas for 120 ways to help save energy and our guide to why your gas and electric bills might be too high, and what to do about it.
Switch energy suppliers
No matter which energy company you’re currently with, it’s always worth checking the market regularly to see if you could save money by switching.
At OVO, we know that price matters – that’s why we keep our costs down, to help you save. You'll also get our 3% OVO Interest Reward on any credit in your account.
We’re here to help you protect the planet – in lots of cool ways. Because with OVO, you can choose to: power your home with our renewable energy, get trees planted in the UK in your name, help us protect rainforests, and reduce energy waste in your home – which all means goodbye carbon, hello brighter future.