4 ways to lower the amount of energy you use at home- Today FM
Head of communications at bonkers.ie, Daragh Cassidy discusses on Today FM how people can reduce their energy consumption and the steps they can take to cut the cost of their energy bills.
How can you lower your energy bill?
1. Check what government supports are out there
We recommend that those who are in need of extra assistance should speak to their local social welfare office.
2. Switch suppliers on bonkers.ie
Energy providers reserve the best discounts for their new customers. This is why we encourage everyone to move to a different supplier once their contract is finished and they’ve moved up to the standard rate price.
On bonkers.ie you can compare all the different energy deals available on the market in minutes.
3. Cutting down on energy usage around the home
There isn’t one major thing you can do to drastically reduce your energy usage around the house, but there are lots of little things you can do such as:
- Buying LED light bulbs - which use 80-90% less electricity than a standard bulb
- Turning down the thermostat by one degree
- Not overfilling the kettle
- Unplugging appliances
To discover tips on how to cut your electricity usage read our top 15 ways to use less electricity in your home.
Tips for lowering your energy usage around the house
A fridge can cost you €1 a day to run which is €30 a month.
For every 10-15 seconds that the fridge is left open, it needs 45 minutes to cool down to its original temperature. This means it needs more energy to cool it down.
You should follow these rules in relation to your fridge:
- Keep the fridge door closed
- Don’t put hot food straight into the fridge
A cooker uses around one third of the energy an electric shower does. If you put on the oven for your Sunday roast for one hour, it is the equivalent of having a 20-minute electric shower.
We recommend that you turn off your cooker 5 minutes before you finish cooking, as the latent heat should cook your meal for the final 5 minutes.
This could save you €20 over the course of the year.
Use your dishwasher
Washing your dishes in the sink oftentimes uses up a lot more electricity because you need to turn on the immersion to heat up a tank of water.
On the other hand, dishwashers, especially energy-efficient ones use up only a tiny amount of energy.
A cycle in your dishwasher may only cost 20c or 25c, even with today’s high prices.
Place your furniture in the right place
Don’t put your sofas in front of radiators as it will block off the heat and you will not get to enjoy it.
Discover what appliances have the highest energy consumption in this guide.
Will the cost of my bills increase if I use renewable energy?
Many people are under the impression that if they are with a renewable energy supplier they may be spared the new price hikes but unfortunately, this is not the case.
For example, SSE Airtricity is one of the few green energy suppliers in Ireland, and they have dozens of wind farms across the country. However, there is only one electricity grid in Ireland. This means that the energy generated by the wind farms gets inputted into the same grid that receives electricity from burning gas, oil and coal.
Everyone is consuming energy from this one grid, therefore if there is a gas or electricity shortage across the market, then everyone will suffer.
In short, if you have a contract with a renewable energy supplier you will still be susceptible to energy price increases.
Can energy suppliers change their prices once you have signed a contract?
Yes, they can, this is because there are no fixed energy tariffs in Ireland, only variable tariffs. This means that energy suppliers can increase and decrease their standard rates as the market changes.
When you sign up for a deal with a new energy supplier, the contract is with the discounted rate you receive on their standard rate.
This means that the standard rate on gas and electricity can fluctuate but the discount you receive on this rate will remain the same. This is how you save money.
Is it easy to switch suppliers?
For the majority of people, it is extremely easy to switch suppliers as it can all be done online.
However, for people who have built up arrears with their existing provider and are in debt to them, the supplier they hope to switch to may deny their application or they will have to pay a deposit with the new supplier to get the contract.
On bonkers.ie, our energy comparison service allows you to simply compare all the gas and electricity deals in the country, so you can find the best discounts for you.
You can learn all about the switching process in this guide here.