Save hundreds of pounds on your energy and water bills
We’re all looking to keep bills down this winter and so it’s worth thinking about how we use hot water at home. A sizeable chunk of the energy we use comes from heating water: 18% for the average gas-heated household.
Small changes in your daily routine to save water can take significant amounts off bills. A household of four could save hundreds of pounds a year on energy and water bills by using our tips below. Have a look and see how much you could save.*
In the Bathroom
The bathroom is where we use the most water and saving water here depends on individual circumstances. However, by only using the water we need, the bathroom is where the biggest savings could be made. Here’s how a household with a water meter could save on bills each year:
- Reduce showers to 4 minutes to save £165 on energy and £100 on water
- Use an aerated showerhead to save £75 on energy bills and £45 on water
- Swap one bath a week for a 4 minute shower to save £35 on energy and £18 on water
- Turn off the tap while everyone brushes their teeth to save £40 on water
- Use a dual flush toilet correctly to save £20 on water
How long do you spend in the shower? The average shower is 8 minutes long and uses almost 100 litres of hot water! Instead, by having 4 minute showers, a household could save £165 a year on the energy bill, and an additional £100 on the water bill if on a water meter.
Make your shower even more efficient by having the right showerhead. You might be able to install an efficient showerhead known as an ‘aerated’ or ‘regulated’ showerhead. It saves on water without reducing the strength of flow, by mixing air into the water. A household could save £75 a year on energy bills and another £45 if on a water meter. Note that this isn’t advised for an electric shower as it could damage the shower unit, and electric showers are already water efficient. Also note that a large and fixed shower head can’t be easily replaced.
Not everyone has baths but if you do they can add up to a big amount of water and energy, with the average bath using 80 litres. If you’re having multiple baths each week and you’re able to swap one for a 4 minute shower instead, you could save £35 on energy and £18 on water.
Do you leave the tap on while brushing your teeth? This is one of the easiest changes you can make to save water, as you can brush your teeth just as well without running the tap while you do it. A running tap uses 6 litres a minute and could save £40 if everyone in the house turns it off while brushing their teeth.
If you’ve got a dual-flush toilet it’s worth knowing which button is for the small flush and which one is for the big flush, as using the small flush when you can will use less water and could save you £20 a year.
In the Kitchen
There are several appliances that use water in the kitchen and by using them carefully, small savings can add up. Here’s how a household could save £100 on bills each year:
- Run the washing machine at 30 degrees and cut back on using it by one run per week to save £34 on energy and £5 on water
- Cut back on using the dishwasher by one run a week to save £17 a year on energy
- Fit an aerator on the kitchen tap to save £30 on water
- Only boil what you need in the kettle to save £13 on energy
The washing machine is the kitchen appliance that uses the most water, and on average we use it just under five times a week. Only running it when full could help to cut out one run a week, and along with running it at an eco-setting of 30 degrees, you could save £34 on energy and £5 on water a year.
A full dishwasher is often more water and energy efficient than washing by hand. If you use it multiple times a week, only running it when full could help you cut out one run a week to save £17 on energy.
Just like for the showerhead, an aerator fitted on your kitchen tap will save on water without reducing the strength of the flow, by mixing air into the water. If on a water meter, it could save a household £30 a year on water bills.
It’s easy to overfill the kettle, but by only filling it with the water you need, you could save £13 on energy.
Saving water is in everyone’s interest
With lots to worry about it’s easy to forget about water. But you can make savings by thinking about how often and how long you use hot water for. Only use the water you need, and use appliances more carefully. This way you can cut out the water and energy you’re wasting and so save money on your bills.
This winter we’re all looking to make savings wherever we can. As the weather gets freezing, we’ve got tips on making your home more energy efficient and how to avoid expensive leaks. Finally, the benefits of saving water don’t end here and we’ve got more information on how it also helps the environment during climate change.
* All statistics are provided by Energy Saving Trust and are for a four person gas-heated household. Water bill savings apply if the household is on a water meter.Back