Switch off for Summer to save

Sarah Finney 20 May 2014

We’ve heard it all before. Green charities, the government, schools and probably even your local council have passed on the message that going greener could save you money. But are you aware of all the ways you can save money around your home? It goes beyond swapping to energy efficient light bulbs and turning down the thermostat, and could add up to save an average home some serious money over the Summer...

Switch off the sofa

Switching off your TV, DVD player, laptops and any chargers that are on standby could save you around £30 a year - not to be sniffed at, and worth doing if you’ll be spending less time on the sofa and more in the sun this season. As the sun gets brighter, check that your TV’s brightness settings aren't turned up too high now you’ve got all that extra daylight- the brighter the setting, the more energy your TV will use, and the factory setting is often too bright for home use. It’s also worth noting that buying A+ or A++ electricals, including new TVs and computer monitors could save you up to £30 per item per year. Perhaps less pressing for Summer, the biggest saving here is probably to be found in your windows: double glazing your windows, if you haven’t already, could save you up to £135 a year.

Turn down the heat in the kitchen

Need a new fridge or freezer? Going for something A+ or A++ rated (which most are nowadays) could save you up to £30 per item per year on your electricity bills. Filling your kettle with only as much water as you need (roughly 200ml a cup) could save you between £20 and £30 per year, surprisingly. If everyone only boiled the water they needed, the Energy Saving Trust estimates that we could save enough electricity in a year to power all UK street lighting for two months. Most washing detergents are now tough enough to remove stains at 30°C - turning down the heat on your wash and only washing full loads could save you another £10 a year. Filling up a washing up bowl twice a day instead of using a running hot tap while you clean the plates could save you up to £30 a year on your gas and £30 on your water bill a year.

Put over-usage to bed

Most of us leave our phones on charge overnight, but modern mobiles only need a couple of hours to completely recharge - the rest is standby energy which could add up over the course of a year. Take the towel challenge: by towel-drying your hair instead of using a hairdryer, even in part, you could save a few pounds a year. Think about what you’re putting on extension leads - does everything connected need to be on at the same time?

Put the savings to good use

As well as feeling good about doing your bit in your home in the fight against climate change, energy saving in the home can lead to a healthier bank balance, freeing up some money to make the most of. To see how everyday changes to your spending can impact your long-term financial health, check out the innovative MoneyHub tool.