How to make your home more energy efficient
Reduce heat loss
Combatting the cold in your home is not just about generating heat, but also preventing heat loss. Here are three ways to make a big impact:
Insulation is one of the biggest ways to retain warmth and reduce the need for heating. Just like wearing a cosy beanie on a winter’s day prevents heat from escaping from your head, loft insulation reduces heat from escaping out the top of your house. Wall insulation is a must-have too, whether your home has solid or cavity walls. According to the Energy Saving Trust, you’ll likely recoup the costs of installing cavity wall insulation within five years, thanks to the savings on energy bills. Bonus: insulation helps keep your home cooler in warm months too.
Upgrading windows is another great way to boost energy efficiency. Any leaky window frames will let warmth out and drafts in. When choosing replacements go for high-quality windows that offer insulation and an airtight seal, which will prevent heat loss and keep heating costs down. If you have any single-glazed windows, upgrading to double or triple glazing is a wise investment that will save money in the long run.
Got roof windows? VELUX roof windows are a superb way to make a home more energy efficient as they have ThermoTechnology glazing, manufactured with high-performance materials in the window construction, which delivers brilliant energy efficiency, insulation and an airtight seal.
Don’t forget window treatments
They can help reduce heat loss too! Choose thick curtains to keep drafts out, and if you have VELUX roof windows you can add VELUX blackout energy blinds that both insulate from the cold and create a blackout effect, which is great for keeping bedrooms and living rooms cosy.
- Insulation is one of the biggest ways to retain warmth and reduce the need for heating.
- Leaky window frames let heat out and drafts in. If you’re doing a replacement, VELUX roof windows with ThermoTechnology glazing brilliant energy efficiency, insulation and an airtight seal.
- Small changes like draught-proofing, turning down the thermostat and switching to LED light bulbs add up to significant energy savings.
Keep it cool
With warmer summers now a common occurrence it’s important to be able to keep rooms cool too. Switching on fans or air conditioning units can quickly set energy bills soaring, so simple measures like closing curtains, blinds and shutters on warm days can help keep the temperature down.
If you choose a VELUX roof window you can keep things even cooler by adding a VELUX anti-heat blind. They reduce heat from the sun’s rays and can be made from transparent fabric, so you can keep the light coming in while turning down the heat.
For even more heat protection choose a VELUX anti-heat blackout shutter, which will prevent your room from getting too hot in the summer but also keep it toasty in the winter.
Smart home devices can help you monitor energy use and maintain a healthy indoor climate. If you don’t have one already, get your energy provider to install a smart meter in your home which allows you to track when and how much energy was used, and how much it will cost. This real-time information can help you make adjustments to your energy use to reduce waste and save on energy bills.
Smart technology can also help manage your home’s indoor climate. VELUX ACTIVE is an easy-to-install indoor climate control kit that connects VELUX roof windows, blinds and shutters. It has a user-friendly smartphone app that lets you control your home’s indoor climate from anywhere. The smart sensor monitors the temperature, humidity and CO2 levels and automatically operates your connected products when the levels are either too high or too low, from opening windows to let in fresh air to closing blinds at the end of the day.
Embrace small changes
The following ideas are not dramatic, but collectively they will help reduce your bills and make your home more energy efficient overall.
Look for the gaps where cold air can sneak in, such as around doors, loft hatches, floorboards, windows and letterboxes. You can fill gaps with various strips (like foam, rubber, metal or plastic), silicone or caulk sealants or an old-fashioned door draught excluder.
Try a cooler wash
Washing your clothes at 30 degrees uses less energy and can be as effective as a hotter wash. Be sure to choose a laundry detergent that works at lower temperatures.
Switch up your lighting
Most people have already replaced incandescent bulbs with compact fluorescent energy-saving bulbs. Next time you need to replace a bulb, try a LED bulb which is an even greener choice, lasting up to 9 times as long as a compact fluorescent bulb.
Turn down the thermostat
Lowering your thermostat by just 1 degree can help you save around 10% on your heating bills, according to the Energy Saving Trust. Make sure it’s set to a safe, comfortable temperature of between 18°C and 21°C.