10 ways to save electricity at home and reduce bills

03 January 2024 | Stephen Marcus

There are lots of ways to save energy at home – whether you’re able to make small or big changes. Saving energy cuts your carbon footprint, too. Here are some ideas for you.

From kitchen tips to doing the laundry, find out how to save money and energy at the same time.

1. Switching to LED light bulbs

Traditional light bulbs only convert 10% of the energy used to power them into light. The rest is lost as heat1.

If you’re able to replace worn out old bulbs with LEDs, then each year you could cut your carbon emissions by up to 40kg2 – and your bills by £303. LEDs have a lifespan of around 34 years, compared to just over 1 year for incandescent bulbs.

2. Switching off at the wall

According to the Energy Saving Trust, the average UK household spends £65 a year on appliances left on standby4. When you leave devices like TVs or stereos on standby, they still use power. Turning them off at the wall stops this happening. 

3. Making fridges and freezers more energy efficient

  • Checking the temperature – the ideal temperature for your fridge is between 3˚and 5˚C, and for your freezer it’s minus 18˚C. Setting them to the right temperature will stop them using more energy than they need to.
  • Cleaning the coils – the coils at the back of your fridge get dirty over time. Wiping them clean can boost the fridge’s energy efficiency. 
How to save electricity at home

4. Using the microwave

A microwave can cook some things just as well as the oven or the hob – and use far less energy to do it. For instance, if you’re reheating soup, there’s no need to use the hob. It’s much more efficient to use the microwave – and it gets the job done quicker too.

5. Washing clothes on a lower temperature

Modern detergents are able to get good results at lower temperatures. According to the Energy Saving Trust, washing clothes at 30˚C saves 40% of the energy used when washing at higher temperatures.

And a study by Which? found that if the whole of the UK washed at 30˚C, it would cut the emission of 858,000 tonnes of carbon each year.

6. Getting a smart meter

A smart meter shows you see exactly how much energy your home uses. This can help you find ways to reduce costs. Book a free installation in 2 minutes.

At OVO, a smart meter also gives you access to things like Power Move, which lets you earn credit for using energy at off-peak times.

7. Filling the kettle with the right amount of water

From making a cup of tea to boiling water for a pan, only filling the kettle with the amount of water needed stops any energy being wasted. According to the Energy Saving Trust, this can save £11 a year5.

8. Buying energy efficient appliances

Whenever you have to replace appliances at home, buying an energy efficient model will use less energy and save money on bills.

9. Getting appliances serviced regularly

Getting your appliances serviced makes sure they’re working well, efficiently, and not using more power than they need.

10. Investing in smart home technology

If you’re able to, installing some smart home tech can help save energy. By getting a smart thermostat, for example, you can make sure you never heat an empty home – and you can sync your heating up to the weather.