It is no secret that the way we live is damaging the planet. The fossil fuels we burn for heat and power are emitting carbon, a greenhouse gas, that is gradually increasing the atmosphere leading to climate change. We know that we need to make big changes if we are going to save the world, but how? One of the most effective steps you can take is to reduce your home’s carbon emissions by reducing your energy consumption. Here are five home improvements that could significantly improve the energy efficiency of your home, reduce your carbon footprint, and make your energy bills cheaper.
1. Replace your old boiler
Over 85% of UK homes rely on natural gas boilers to produce hot water for domestic use and central heating. The older a boiler gets, the less efficiently it will operate, i.e., it will use more fuel which means higher emissions and more expensive bills. Many older boilers are only 60-70% efficient, which means that for every £1 you spend on heating, the boiler is wasting as much as 30-40p. By comparison, modern boilers are at least 92% efficient, so the potential savings are clear.
2. Improve your insulation
You may not realize how much heat is being lost through your walls, ceilings, and floors, but a poorly insulated home will be significantly more costly to heat and will increase your carbon emissions. By installing better quality insulation in your loft, walls, or floors, you will retain more of your heating and will be able to spend less on fuel. It can also be effective to draught-proof your home by filling gaps around windows, doors, letterboxes, exposed pipes, or cracks. Click here for more information on draught-proofing.
3. Install new windows
Another outlet for heat loss is single glazed, poorly fitted windows. By upgrading to double glazing (or even triple glazing) through a double glazing Wolverhampton company in your windows, you can significantly reduce the amount of heating that escapes your home. Upgrading your windows can also bring additional benefits such as reduced noise pollution and less likelihood of condensation and dampness developing in your home.
4. Get a smart meter and/or smart heating controls
A big part of reducing your energy usage is knowing when and how you are using more energy and being able to regain control. A smart meter display will tell you how much energy you are using in real-time, and some will also tell you how much you are spending based on your energy tariff. Smart heating controls can be effective at reducing your energy usage as they enable you to control your heating via an app even when you are not at home, to set detailed schedules, and to heat different areas of the home to different temperatures. Some will even turn your heating on or off depending on whether you are at home using GPS.
5. Embrace renewable energy technology
Renewable technology, i.e., technology that harnesses the natural power in our environment, is becoming increasingly popular. A popular choice is to install solar photovoltaic (PV) panels on the roof where they are exposed to sunlight. The panels can capture this sunlight, and the system converts it to usable electricity for your home. If you would like to switch to a renewable heating system, consider an air or ground source heat pump, solar thermal panels, or a biomass boiler.