HOUSEHOLDS will be looking for ways to cut costs as energy bills soar this winter.
The government’s new Energy Price Guarantee (EPG) came into effect on October 1, meaning energy bills for a typical household will be capped at £2,500.
Bills had been due to hit £3,500 under Ofgem’s energy price cap.
But many will still find it difficult to to pay their way – with some struggling to pay for food because of the costs.
The new EPG, replaces this and only limits the amount suppliers can charge.
But it does not limit the amount a household will pay based off their energy usage.
This is why your bills may fall above or below the £2,500 figure widely publicised.
Because of soaring bills, you’ll be wanting to know how to you can save money.
Every penny counts at the moment with the cost of living rising.
You might not know this, but some household appliances are driving up your bills – and you could save yourself hundreds by making some simple tweaks to the way you’re using them.
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Small changes to habits now and tweaks to devices could save you hundreds of pounds a year.
Here are all the ways you can save on energy guzzling home appliances.
It’s worth remembering though that appliances can vary along with your usage and how much you pay for energy, so the exact saving will vary from one home to the next.
Slashing the cost of these appliances could make a big difference.
TVs, computers and games consoles
It can be easy to forget to switch off the telly or your games console in the evening.
But it can mean that its eating up 19% of your total electricity bill.
Experts warn that leaving everyday items like this on – known as the “vampire” or “phantom” load – could be adding as much as £500 a year to your energy bills unnecessarily.
A TV is one of the most energy-hungry devices in the house when left on standby.
A telly uses 40 watts of energy when it’s being used, but still wants 10 watts when it’s sitting in standby.
British Gas’ research suggests more than 60% of households leave their TV on standby for an average of 20 hours every day.
Making sure you turn it off could save you £24.61 a year.
Keeping your computer switched on or on standby could be wasting money.
Loop estimates that failing to turn your computer off could cost you an extra £79 a year and even more now energy costs have risen,
Your Xbox and Playstation use 130 an 120 watts respectively when they’re in use, but still eat up 10 watts when they’re on standby.
It’s estimated that households can save an average of £12.17 per year by switching off their game consoles when not in use.
We all love a cuppa – but the nation’s love of brews could be costing us a lot.
Kettles – along with other kitchen appliances like cookers and blenders – account for 19% of the average home’s energy use.
Overfill it and you’re boiling more water than you need to, costing extra energy and crucially money.
Tashema Jackson, consumer champion at energyhelpline previously told The Sun: “Adjusting how much water you use and the temperature you boil your water to, can save you around £6 a year.”
The exact amount you can save depends on your how much you pay for energy and how many cuppas you have each day – the more you drink the more you stand to save.
Simply take the mug you’re using and fill that with water before pouring it into the kettle, that way you know you’re only paying to boil what you actually use.
According to the Energy Saving Trust switching from a 40 degree wash to a 30 degree one could shave on average £12 a year off your energy bill.
Uswitch energy expert Will Owen previously told The Sun: “Use a cold water or 30°C cycle where possible.
“It’s only for particularly dirty clothes, bad stains or underwear that you are likely to need warmer temperatures.”
In fact you could even go lower than 30 degrees to save more cash and you’ll still get a good wash.
According to Which? all washing machines in the UK have been required to have a 20°C option visible on the control panel since 2013, to help save energy.
Most models of washing machine now come with an eco-mode that can be used to save the environment – and some cash.
This setting will use less water and means you’ll use less energy to heat it when washing your clothes.
These are usually set to 30 degrees too, but may also run for a shorter time.
According to British Gas engineer Joanna Flowers, you could save £10 a year from dialling your machine to this setting.
Meanwhile an extra washing machine spin before you tumble dry your load could shorten the time you have the dryer on.
Fridges and freezers
Appliances which use energy to cool things – like fridges and freezers – could be proving to be expensive too.
They total around 16% of the total average household’s electricity bill.
While it isn’t realistic to turn off your fridge and freezer, there are things you can do to get them working more efficiently.
Failing to defrost it for instance could be adding on an extra £150 a year.
Meanwhile, when you have too much food in your fridge or freezer, the appliance struggles to keep all the items of food cold, and uses more energy as a result.
Experts at Energyhelpline previously told The Sun: “Unclutter your fridge, so make sure your fridge isn’t packed to the brim.
“Especially near the ventilating outlets as keeping space at the top and sides of your fridge helps the cool air move around easier.”
But with that said you shouldn’t leave it empty either.
If either are sparse, you can keep your fridge and freezer filled with things like bottles of tap water that will slot into the empty space.
You can also fill empty space in the freezer with screwed up newspaper.
Both DIY items can quickly freeze over – and once they do they’ll keep the rest of the contents cooler, so the appliance won’t have to work as hard.
Placing a fridge freezer in a cool and ventilated area will mean it uses around 216kWh less energy a year – saving you around £60.
Using the eco setting on your dishwasher could also save you cash.
Your normal dishwasher setting is usually set at a temperature of between 55ºC and 65ºC.
An eco wash or energy saving setting generally uses around 20% to 40% less energy, according to Which?.
They generally run at 45ºC to 50ºC, which means it’s cheaper to run but still gets your dishes clean.
These settings usually use less water too, but run for longer than a standard wash.
According to Bosch, using eco-mode compared to the auto programme will save you around 523 kWh of energy over a year.
One kWh of electricity currently costs 28p – so that’s a saving of £146.44 over a year.
But ditching the dishwasher altogether and washing up by hand could help you save more
The average cost of running a dishwasher based on three loads a week adds up to £110.76 a year.
You could also get in touch with your local council to see if they are still running the Household Support Fund, although many of those schemes have closed.
Charities and other organisations often offer grants and you might be able to spend that money on energy costs.
You can search for these kind of grants on the Turn2Us website.
It will be paid in six monthly instalments from October until March 2023.
Households will see a discount of £66 applied to their bills in October and November, and £67 in December, January, February and March.
It’s up to energy suppliers to dish out the discount – and how they will pay it varies.
Thousands of households can apply for free home improvements – and the measures could save you up to £520 on your bills.
Councils run schemes where you can apply for energy efficiency grants worth up to £10,000 to make your home greener.
If you’re eligible for the help, you can get your home fitted with insulation, double glazing, solar panels and energy efficient doors.
In most areas, homeowners must have a total income of less than £30,000 to get a full £10,000 grant.
If your income is less than £30,000 then you could receive up to £10,000 in the offered grant.
If your household income is more than £30,000 a year you can qualify for up to £5,000 of grant funding.
Your home must have an EPC rating of D, E, F or G to be eligible.
The Sun has put together a guide to everything you need to know as energy bills rise from October 1 – including meter readings and grants.
A simple gadget could help you spot these vampire device around the home – and it only costs £12.
Here’s the full list of energy bill help you could get worth up to £3,130 if you’re struggling with bills.