Heating and Lighting

Top Tip: Cut down on home energy use

Why?

Cutting down on the energy you use at home is a great way to reduce your personal emissions. Many homes in Devon aren’t very energy efficient, so reducing the amount of energy needed to heath and light up our homes could amount to a big carbon saving across the county.

Check out our recent video, which is full of helpful tips about how you can reduce the energy needed to heat and light-up your home.

Take a personalized Home Energy Check

Why?

All homes are different so getting personalised advice for your home will make it easier for you to be sure you’re doing the right things and help you understand what actions could make the biggest difference. 

block of flats with double glazing and solar panels
Credit: Ashden / Ashden 

How?

Just enter a few details into the energy efficiency calculator from government’s Simple Energy Advice to receive your personalised recommendations.  

Switch to a green renewable energy supplier

Why?

Switching to green energy is one of the easiest and quickest ways to reduce your carbon footprint and play your part in creating demand for more renewable energy. To achieve net-zero, we need all our energy to come from renewable sources.

windturbines above Ardrossan in North Ayrshire Scotland

Credit: Jim McDowall / Alamy 

How?

Follow Ofgem’s advice on switching your energy supplier. Most big energy suppliers now offer a renewable tariff, but not all renewable energy tariffs are the same.

Choose a supplier who can prove that all of their renewable energy is generated themselves, or purchased directly from renewable generators. Ask your supplier to show you where they get their renewable energy from.

Have a look at this Which article on “How Green Is Your Energy Tarriff?” or this article by the Energy Saving Trust which suggests some good suppliers.

Turn the heat down

Why?

Reducing your room temperature by 1°C could cut your heating bills by up to 10% and save you around £50 per year. If every household in Devon turned their thermostat down by 1°C, we would save 75,000 tonnes of CO2 every year.

How?

Insulate your home

Why?

Houses that aren’t well insulated need to use more energy to keep warm. Not only does this cost you more money, it also creates a much larger carbon footprint – especially if you aren’t on a renewable tariff!

While the initial insulation may require a bit of investment, it will pay off in the long run with lower bills, a more efficient home and a smaller carbon footprint.

How?

Check out these advice sheets from the Centre for Sustainable Energy which cover how to insulate your home’s walls, floor and loft and reduce heat losses from doors and windows.

CosyDevon is a council backed scheme offering a range of free and subsidised energy saving measures that can help you save energy and money. Find out more at www.cosydevon.com.

If you live in a protected or historic building, the Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings has a free advice line which offers technical advice on a range of topics including damp and insulation. Find out more on their website.

Historic England provides comprehensive information on energy efficiency in historic buildings on their website.

Moving house? You can gain favourable terms on a mortgage for buying an energy-efficient home. Find out more about green mortgages here.

LED Lightbulbs

Why?

There are two main types of energy efficient light bulbs available. Compact Fluorescent Lamps (CFLs) and Light Emitting Diodes (LEDs).

CFLs are what you typically think of as an energy efficient light bulb. CFLs are a cost-effective option for most general lighting requirements. Replacing a traditional light bulb with a CFL will save you around £3 per year, or £50 over the lifetime of the bulb.

LEDs though more expensive to buy initially, are more efficient than CFLs and will save you more money in the long term. Replacing a halogen spotlight with an equivalent LED will save you around £4 each year, or £140 over the bulb’s lifetime.

If every household in Devon swapped two normal 60 watt bulbs for low-energy ones, we’d save over 100,000 tonnes of CO2 emissions. 

How?

LED bulbs can be bought from all major retailers.

Read this advice sheet from Centre for Sustainable Energy on LED lightbulbs.

If you are at risk of fuel poverty, CosyDevon may be able to offer you free LED bulbs to help reduce your fuel bills.

Install Renewable Energy

Why?

To meet net-zero carbon, all of our energy for heating and electricity needs to come from renewable sources.  

solar installers working on a roof
Credit: Andy Aitchinson / Ashden 

How?

The Energy Saving Trust provides guidance on choosing the right type of renewable electricity or heating system for your needs and circumstances and the Simple Energy Advice from government explains the funding available to help you install them.  Advice leaflets are also available from the Centre for Sustainable Energy.  

For local advice, contact your nearest community energy organisation via the Devon Community Energy Network.