Approximately 25% of our overall energy use is in the home. Learn ways to reduce both your heating and electricity use.

Heating

Turn the thermostat down to 20°C in living areas

The temperature in hallways and bedrooms should be cooler, ideally between 15-18°C. You can reduce your heating bill by 10% by lowering your room temperature by just one degree.

Only heat it when you need it

Set the times that your heating comes on and off so that it fits with your daily routine. Radiators will continue to heat your home for some time after the heating is turned off. So try turning on your heating 30 minutes before you need it. Then turn it off 30 minutes before you don’t need it anymore.

Turn radiators off or down in rooms that you do not use very often

Get your boiler serviced every year 

This will make it run more efficiently, improve safety, as well as reducing fuel consumption by 10%. When you are having your boiler serviced ask your plumber to explain the settings and how to use them correctly. You can reduce he boiler thermostat in mild weather, but don’t go below 65°C.

Install additional attic and wall insulation 

You could be losing 25% of your home’s heat through your roof alone. Visit our page on Insulation Grants for more information on how to apply.

Hot Water

Don't waste energy

Set your water heating to 65°C on your immersion heating so that you don’t waste energy by overheating water. Fit a cylinder thermostat if the hot water is being heated by the central-heating boiler. This will moderate the temperature of the water. If you are having your boiler serviced ask your plumber to explain the settings and how to use them.

Only heat it when you need it

Install an immersion timer to ensure you have hot water only when you need it. Then keep that hot water warm with insulation or a lagging jacket on the tank. A good quality 80mm lagging jacket will save up to 30% of your water heating costs. It will pay for itself in just two to three months.

Insulate

Insulate hot water pipes with foam tubing especially in unheated areas like the attic.

Invest in renewable energy

Install solar panels for your roof which could meet around 60% of your hot water requirement each year. 1m² of solar panel receives the equivalent of more than 100l of oil in free solar energy per year!

Invest in Solar PV

Electricity

Know your appliances

To keep your use of electricity as low as possible, you should know which appliances use the most electricity. Be smart about when and how often you use them. A good rule of thumb is: if it makes things hot, then it uses a lot of electricity. For example, electric showers, kettles, and hair dryers.

Time of day

Electricity is at highest demand between 7am-9am in the morning and 5pm-7pm at night. Electricity is at peak production during these times and is typically more carbon intensive. Try to use electricity outside these times. Many new appliances have delay start timers and this can help avoid peak time usage.

Electricity supplier

Make sure you shop around for the best electricity prices for your needs. Check out price comparison websites, such as bonkers.ie to do this.

Top Tips

  • The oven is a big energy user, so use it sparingly. Batch cooking larger meals is a great way to save time and energy.
  • Use a lower temperature for your washing machine and dishwasher. Wait until you have a full load before turning them on. Minimise use of the dryer and hang washing out to dry when possible. If you use a clothes horse indoors make sure that there is adequate ventilation to prevent mould growth.
  • Adjust your fridge / freezer temperature settings. Your fridge should be between 3°C to 5 °C and your freezer between -15°C to -18 °C. Don’t leave the fridge door open for too long while getting food. It takes 45 minutes for the fridge to cool down to its original temperature afterwards.
  • Unplug your appliances when they aren’t in use. Even in standby mode they are using 20% of the energy they would consume if they were on.
  • Replace your old inefficient light bulbs with low energy CFLs or LED lights. Start with the lamps in your living room or kitchen where you spend most of your time.
  • And remember, buy the highest A rating possible when replacing home appliances. The difference in cost may be less than you think. A higher rated appliance will be cheaper to run over their lifetime.
Energy labelling