ENERGY prices are already high and more price hikes are due in just a matter of weeks – putting more strain on Brits’ wallets.
Some simple tricks can help you reduce the costs while you still have the heating on though, and you don’t have to fork out much to try them out.
Tricks to lower your energy bill could cost as little as 60p
Households will have to dig deep and find an extra £693 to pay their energy bills from April 1.
That’s when the new energy price cap, which sets the maximum amount providers can charge customers, will come into force, rising from £1,277 to £1,971.
And as a result, plenty of Brits will be thinking about how to cut down their energy usage to slash the cost of their bills.
But they don’t want to spend a fortune to do it – luckily some bargain supplies you can pick up from the supermarket for as little as 60p could help you make you massive savings.
From creating your own double glazing with cling film to making a reflective barrier behind your radiator, they’re simple to do too.
Tashema Jackson, energy expert at energyhelpline, said: “While some tips may seem fairly low tech, they can make a difference in how much gas or electricity it takes to get your home to your ideal temperature.
“But make sure you’re careful when doing any bits of DIY around the home, as you don’t want to cause any damage that ends up costing you more money in the short term.”
Here are some of the budget ways you can splash out to make a difference on your heating bills and more.
Spend 65p, Save £20 a year
- Hack: Tinfoil behind the radiator
It works by reflecting the hot air coming from the back of your radiator back into the room, instead of your radiator blowing hot air at the wall.
This means that you won’t that it won’t be wasting energy – and adding money onto your bill.
Simply put sellotape on the corner of the foil and pop it behind your radiator.
British Gas says the trick could save you £20 a year.
And you don’t have to fork out much to complete the tip either, at Tesco and Aldi, a roll of tin foil costs only 65p – and will work just as effectively.
Spend £3, Save £74 a year
To save the most money, you want to stop cold air coming in and prevent warm air from escaping.
Millions are wasting a whopping £128 a year on their heating bills alone, according to Uswitch.
Draughts or gaps around your doors and windows act as unwanted ventilation shafts.
That means all the while you are paying for heat to fill your home, a large amount of it could be escaping – and taking your funds with it!
DIY draught-proofing starts at just over £3 for a roll of self-adhesive draught-excluding tape though.
You can use it to block up unwanted gaps around windows, doors and chimneys that let cold air in and warm air out.
You can also buy cheap draft excluders that do the same job for gaps under doors.
Norton Finance says you could save £372 over five years which works out to be around £74 a year with the trick.
Spend 60p, Save £30 a year
- Hack: Clingfilm works too
A budget way to create your own double glazing is by placing a layer of plastic film on window frames to seal up more pockets of hot air that could be escaping, or cold air filtering in.
Draught-proofing around windows and doors could save you around £30 a year according to the Energy Saving Trust.
It can be achieved from as little as 60p if you buy something as simple as cling film from the likes of Asda.
You can buy actual window film kits for around £5 – £10 too which is far cheaper than the cost of full double glazing.
But really you can use any material for the second layer of glazing, as long as it’s transparent and airtight.
Spend from 80p, Save £232 a year
Moving your lighting to more energy efficient bulbs will drastically reduce your energy bills too.
Natalie Mitchell from HomeHow said: “Although LED bulbs are slightly more expensive to buy, they use 80% less electricity, and can save households £232 a year.”
The bulbs don’t have to be expensive though, if you know where to look.
On Facebook page Extreme Couponing and Bargains UK, one savvy shopper had managed to make the upgrade for most of her house for just 80p.
On the bargain sharing forum, she said: “Hubby got a nice surprise when he went to the check out at B&Q Ashford: LED light bulbs down to clear at 10p each.
“Maybe not the most glamorous item but a very proud husband found himself a ‘bargain’.”
Of course, the bargain hunter managed to catch these particular bulbs on sale – they were £4.50 each originally.
But it still means a cheap upgrade for under a fiver – which could be manageable if you switch out the bulbs over time.
What if I splash out a bit more?
If you’re willing to cough up a bit more money on home improvement hacks then you could save even more.
Insulation is a good way to keep your home warm without totting up costs in the long run.
If you insulate your roof you’re going to be forking out around £285 for your mid-terrace house, but Norton Finance says you’ll save £1,155 over five years.
Insulate your walls and you’re looking at parting with around £400, but the finance experts say you could save £924 in the same space of time.
You could also look at upgrading your boiler, because an old inefficient one is going to be working harder and using more energy to do the same job – but it’s going to be another hefty upfront cost.
A new model could cost around £2,500, but you would only save around £1,600 on your energy bills.
We pay for your stories!
Do you have a story for The Sun Online Money team?
The Insidexpress is now on Telegram and Google News. Join us on Telegram and Google News, and stay updated.