When comes to energy saving, the average homeowner will want to make sure that any investments made in their property have the best payback possible. In this blog we are going to go through the five best ways to improve your home, in terms of energy saving payback.
Draught-proof your doors and windows
Whilst insulation is essential in keeping your home warm, ensuring draughts are cut out is just as crucial. You can have a super-insulated wall with a thick layer of insulation, but if there is a big old crack around the door with a freezing cold draught coming through it, all that is negated.
Draught-proofing is really easy to do and you can do it yourself. The initial cost is only a few pounds and the payback will be swift. You could be looking at a payback period of just 6 months!
PAYBACK: 6 months – 1 year
Install a hot water cylinder jacket
This is only relevant to those of you with a system boiler, but if you have a cylinder, insulation is really important. Some cylinders have a loose jacket that has been tied on, whilst others have a foam jacket which is installed in the factory. Either way, there are usually more savings to be made by adding another jacket. Factory spray foam is usually around 50mm thick, and adding a loose jacket to this will usually save £20-30. If you have no insulation on the cylinder at all (i.e. there is visible metal with no jacket), then you could save hundreds of pounds a year by insulating.
The payback period is therefore a few months to a year. If you want to go the extra mile, you can add a cylinder thermostat. These need to be installed by a heating engineer, but they allow you to prevent the water from overheating, which can save you even more money.
PAYBACK: 2 months to 1 year
Install loft insulation
Loft insulation is one of the most commonly installed measures, but it makes a huge difference, simply because heat rises. Insulating the average loft costs just a few hundred pounds, but you may be able to get an ECO grant to reduce the cost, or even get it for free. A 270mm-thick layer is usually installed, and this will give you savings of £200 a year on the average bill. If you already have some insulation, it might be worth getting a top-up. If you have 50mm insulation at the moment, a top-up could save you £50-100 a year, which will pay back in just a few years.
PAYBACK: 1 to 3 years
Install cavity wall insulation
Most properties in the UK are built with cavity walls. These types of walls have a gap between the bricks that can be injected with insulation. This process is cheap, costing only a few hundred pounds with an ECO grant, and also really quick. The average installation takes just a few hours to complete.
Savings on cavity wall insulation are typically £150 a year on the average house, so again the payback here is going to be 2-5 years on average. Well worth the effort! Remember that around half the cavity-walled properties in the UK have already been insulated, so you will need to choose yours hasn’t already been done!
PAYBACK: 3-7 years
Install energy efficient lighting
Lighting is the easiest of these measures to undertake in the majority of cases. It is usually just a case of switching one light bulb for another. Using LED lighting instead of incandescent or halogen bulbs can pay back in as little as 6 months.
We often hear people say that they will upgrade their bulbs as and when they blow. This will actually cost more in the long run, because the lifespan of an old halogen bulb is longer than the payback time from an LED. It makes zero sense not to switch straight away!
PAYBACK: 6 months
Installing Cavity Wall Insulation
Need cavity wall insulation? We have scoured the country for the best tradespeople, so that we can make sure we only recommend those we really trust. You can find one of these tradespeople on our easy to use local installer map.
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