How to reduce your energy use and save money
Would you like to make your home more energy efficient and get more out of the gas and electricity you pay for? We’ve energy saving tips to help you lower your home’s carbon footprint and save money on your monthly bills.
- General energy saving tips for around the house
- How submitting meter reads can save you money
- Kitchen and laundry tips to help reduce your use
- Helping you work from home, more energy efficiently
- How Smartening up your home can help your energy bills
- What home improvements can you make, to reduce your bills
- More questions on how to manage your bills?
General Energy Saving Tips
Service your gas boiler
Getting your boiler serviced every year has many benefits:
- Ensures your boiler is working safely and efficiently
- Prolongs the life of your boiler
- Reduces the risk of expensive repairs
Setting your gas boiler at 65-70°C and your hot water temperature to 60-65°C will help avoid overheating. And having your hot water cylinder insulated will make it more energy efficient.
Turn down your thermostat
Turning down your central heating by just 1°C can lower your bills by 10%. And if possible, programme your heating to only come on when it’s needed.
Bleed your radiators
Bleeding your radiators regularly will improve their efficiency and save energy
Showers vs. Baths
Take showers instead of baths, and try to keep your showers as short as possible to save hot water. A shower typically uses about 20% of the energy compared to needed for a full bath. If you already only use a shower, reducing your shower time even by a couple of minutes a day will have an impact on your energy bills.
Where possible, using your boiler to heat water where possible, instead of your immersion which uses more will also reduce your energy consumption.
- Turn off lights when you leave a room.
- Avoid using electric blankets, especially for long periods of time. If you can, use a hot water bottle instead.
Submitting regular meter reads improves the accuracy of your bills and ensures you only pay for what you use. The quickest way to submit a reading is by signing in to your online account. If you don't have an account, register now. Click here for more information on how to submit a reading.
Please note: if you have a smart electricity meter and are signed up to one of our smart plans, you don’t need to provide meter reads – they’ll be automatically submitted to ESB Networks.
Kitchen and Laundry Tips
If it makes things hot, it costs a lot!*
So, only boil the amount of water you need for your cup of tea – don’t avoid overfilling the kettle unnecessarily.
Wash clothes at 30°C and on 'Eco' settings – these should also be used where possible. Washing a full load, rather than two half loads is also more economical.
If you have a smart meter and are on a Time of Use plan, try to run your washing machine or dishwasher at the time when your electricity tariff rates are lower (e.g. during the middle of the day or on weekends, depending on your plan).
Avoid using a tumble dryer as much as possible as they use a lot of electricity. If you can, dry your clothes outside or indoors on a clothes airier.
Work From Home Tips
Working from home can increase your energy bills, but there are a few simple things you can do to avoid unnecessary energy use.
Switch off at the end of the day
Leaving your devices on standby still uses electricity so turning off appliances when you’re not using them and unplugging devices when they’re charged, will help reduce your energy use.
Set up your home office or workspace so that you’re not blocking radiators and preventing the flow of heat into the room.
When it’s not too cold outside, consider turning off radiators in rooms you don’t use regularly or using a portable heater instead of central heating if you spend most of the day in one room.
Smart Home Tips
A smart thermostat lets you control your heating with your smartphone or tablet. Here at Bord Gáis Energy, we’ve partnered with Hive as our official Smart Home service provider. Hive will work with your existing boiler, and lets so you can control your heating and hot water tank from your smart thermostat. This means that if you forget to switch your heating off before you go out, or you’re going to be home later than planned, just tap the app to turn it off using your smart device. And you can set your own schedule so the heating’s only on when you want it to be.
Click here to learn more about Hive.
LED and smart lighting
LED lightbulbs are 85% more energy-efficient than traditional lightbulbs so can add up to big energy savings over time.
If you’re interested in smart lighting, check out the Hive Starter Pack, which includes 2 Hive Active Light Bulbs, a Hive Motion Sensor, a Hive Plug and more.
Move to a smart plan
Smart electricity meters are being rolled out by ESB Networks in homes and businesses across Ireland. Once your smart meter has been installed, you can move to a Bord Gáis Energy smart plan.
Signing up to a smart plan gives you the flexibility to use your electricity at times when it costs you less. And you can monitor your daily usage and set your spend goals so you’ll be alerted when you’re about to go over your target.
For a detailed guide on adopting smart home technology, see our Ultimate Guide to Smart Homes in Ireland.
Home improvement tips
Energy-efficient homes reduce unnecessary energy consumption, increase the use of renewable energy, and ultimately resulting in lower energy bills.
The following tips can be expensive so may not be for everyone, but making your home more energy efficient will mean longer term savings and a more comfortable home.
Energy-efficient homes should be well-insulated and sealed against draughts. About 25% of the heat loss in your home happens through your attic, so adding or updating attic insulation can reduce your bills dramatically. Wall insulation is another good idea to prevent heat escaping your house, particularly if your house was built before the 1990s.
Adding Solar PV Panels to your house can supply power to appliances in your home, as well as heating water. After this, any remaining excess power feeds the grid (which can earn you money). Check out our Beginner’s Guide to Solar Energy for more information.
A heat pump is a device that measures and controls your home’s climate by distributing the heat that is already available in the air. Heat pumps are one of the most efficient ways to heat a house and can cut home heating emissions by 60%. Take a look at our Heat Pump Guide for more information.
For more information on energy efficient solutions, see our Energy Efficiency Guide.
While some of the above tips require significant investment, don’t forget the government offer SEAI grants to assist homeowners with energy efficient upgrades. For more information on this, read our guide on securing an energy upgrade grant or visit the SEAI website.
Do you still have questions?
Our helpful information hub should tell you everything you need to know about understanding and paying your energy bills.
If you still have questions about how to manage your energy bills please visit our helpful information hub.Learn more