5 Ways to Make Your Home More Energy Efficient

Help our planet. Help your pocket.

As the cost of living continues to soar and the energy crisis shows no signs of easing, we’re seeing more people choose to make their home more energy efficient.

And it makes sense - whether you want to try and save some cash on your gas and electricity bills, or you want to improve your carbon footprint, looking at your heating is the first step. Here are five ways to effectively make your home more sustainable.

Make sure your heating system is working properly

One sure fire way to lose energy is through old, broken heating systems that are no longer fit for purpose.

According to The Conversation, over 23 million households in the UK have gas boilers. As energy prices soar, it’s important to make sure that your boiler is working as efficiently as possible, so that you’re not paying for energy that’s being wasted or lost.

Boiler efficiency is measured from a scale of A-G, with the ratings being:

  • A - 90% and above

  • B - 86-90%

  • C - 82-86%

  • D - 78-82%

  • E - 74-78%

  • F - 70-74%

  • G - below 70%

The lower the rating, the more heat your boiler loses, therefore making it very inefficient (and expensive). For example, if your boiler is over 20 years old and a heat-only non-condensing boiler, it will likely have a G rating. Research has shown that they’re only 60% efficient and lose 40% of their energy (Homeserve). This can result in significantly higher heating bills and colder homes.

These ratings are usually found on a sticker on the side of your boiler, or in the boiler information pack.

It’s important to note that even if your boiler has an A rating, there are alternative (and renewable) heating methods that are even more efficient. Enula’s air source heat pumps are 400% efficient compared to gas boilers being only 90%. This means on average for every kW of electricity you put in; you get 4kW of energy out.

Find out more about heat pumps vs boilers.

Look at your insulation

According to Northern Energy, poorly insulated walls account for between 35-40% of heat loss.

A properly insulated home helps to lower your heating (and cooling) costs as it prevents heat loss. Check your insulation in your walls, ceilings, doors, windows and loft (if you have one) for any draughts.

If you’re losing air through windows, or around doors, you could seal the gaps with caulk or sealant and get door draught excluders.

For walls and ceilings, damp walls are a sure fire sign that your insulation isn’t working properly. If you’re consistently experiencing damp problems, it is worth looking at upgrading your insulation.

This is especially important if you want to install an air source heat pump in the future. Because a heat pump works at lower temperatures, you need to retain as much heat as possible so that your home is heated more effectively, at a lower capacity - this is done through proper insulation.

Think about installing an air source heat pump

Air source heat pumps are low carbon heating solutions that convert renewable energy (air) and turn this into heat.

Heat pumps are measured by Coefficient of Performance (CoP) which looks at the ratio of energy used versus the amount of heat generated, and are much more efficient than gas boilers.

The initial outlay of equipment and installing an MCS approved heat pump starts at £8,000 but can exceed £15,000 (depending on the project requirements). But there are several Government initiatives out there to offset the initial installation cost.

…and invest in smart heating controls

Smart heating controls give you control of your heating, and a clear view of your energy usage. All of our MCS approved heat pumps can be operated via bluetooth and an app and can be used wherever you are.

Consider government grants to improve your home

The UK Government is putting several plans in place to decarbonise all sectors of the UK economy and meet a net zero target by 2050. For example, their Ten Point Plan for a Green Industrial Revolution aims to roll out 600,000 heat pumps into homes per year by 2028. The Government has also announced plans to phase out all gas boilers by 2035.

In a bid to help meet these targets - there are several grants and schemes available across England, Scotland and Wales.

For example, the Boiler Upgrade Scheme was launched earlier this year, and aims to help homeowners in England and Wales afford the upfront costs associated with the purchase and installation of heat pumps. You can find out more about how to make the most of these Government grants here.

With boilers slowly being phased out, it makes sense to look at alternative heating solutions. If you have any questions, browse our Resources centre, or get in touch with an engineer today.

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