Four of the UK’s ‘Big Six’ energy companies have recently announced price rises for 2013/ 14. Effective from this winter, energy companies including British Gas, npower, SSE and ScottishPower will raise their prices, with energy companies EDF Energy and E.On expected to follow in their footsteps. With the cold winter nights ahead of us, this is bad news for homeowners who are already looking for ways to slash those household bills.
To help prepare yourself for the rise in energy bills, and to cut those growing costs further, there are plenty of things that you can do to help keep those energy costs down this winter…
1) Check for cheaper providers
When searching for the best deals for gas and electricity, remember to look beyond the ‘Big Six’ energy providers. Smaller energy companies may have better deals available, and most companies offer initial discounts to new customers.
2) Be more energy efficient
It is something that we are always advised to do, but do any of us actually put energy efficiency into practice? Simple things such as washing our clothes at 30°C and opting for showers instead of baths can greatly cut the amount of energy we consume – helping to eventually lower our overall energy bills.
3) Upgrade your home’s current heating system
Other ways of making your home more energy efficient is to check your current heating system. Most European households use heating circulator pumps to heat the home, however if your domestic central heating pump is old then it is likely to be inefficient – meaning that it is consuming far more energy than necessary. Upgrading the circulator pump to one of the A-labelled central heating pumps available such as Grundfos Hilge pumps will see you saving up to 80% in energy – reducing those pricey bills as a result.
4) Check meter readings
To guarantee that you are only being charged for the exact amount of energy that your home uses, it is a good idea to regularly check meter readings and pass these recordings onto your energy provider – this is particularly useful if you feel that your current energy provider is overcharging you.
5) Find out if any support is available
If you are struggling to pay your energy bills, most energy providers have government backed support available. This ensures that those on low-incomes can afford to heat their homes – which is of great importance during the winter months. The government also offers various types of support to elderly people who find that they cannot afford to pay for central heating in their home.