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The fight against high energy bills

21-01-2019

How can you save energy?

JUST IMAGINE being able to save money off your energy bill every single year… What would you do with all that money after a number of years? Perhaps you want to try a slightly more exotic holiday destination, or maybe even go away for a weekend a little more often? Or would you possibly now consider that investment in the house, the one you’ve been talking about for so long?

You can now stop imagining and seriously start realising savings off your energy bill. Your energy bill is the least pleasant expense item of all your expenditure. Many people therefore simply pay this bill without really taking the time to look at it in detail. This is partly because the energy bill is also one of the most complicated bills to check. But it’s definitely worth the effort. After all, there are plenty of savings to be realised off your annual energy bill! You’ll be left with a significant amount of money by dealing with energy a little more consciously.

So energy-efficient living is definitely paying off right now! Both where the environment as well as where your finances are concerned. This is the very reason why we’ll be looking at the various different ways you can deal with energy more consciously in this informative blog and ultimately realise a more energy-efficient home.

‘Energy-efficient living is definitely paying off right now!’

There are numerous ways for you to realise savings on your energy bill. This could be by way of a one off investment, allowing you to save money in the long-term. But also by making small adjustments to your daily activities, little things you may not even have thought of until now. We will now run through a number of these tips with you:

Insulation
Approximately half of our energy bill consists of heating costs. That’s why adequate insulation is essential for realising a more energy-efficient home. A well-insulated home will make sure you need to use less heating during the winter months, as your home will lose heat less quickly and let in less cold air from the outside. The same applies in the summer, a well-insulated home will let in less heat, resulting in a cool home and no need for air conditioning.

There are various different ways you can insulate your home. Heat can escape your home via the floors, windows, facade and the roof. One type of facade insulation is, for example, to insulate the cavity wall. This cavity is a space of approximately four to six centimetres between the inner and the outer wall. This space is filled up with insulation material. This represents a significant one-off investment, but according to Thuiscomfort you will earn this money back on your energy bill within four years!

In addition to making sure your home is better insulated, you can also protect your home against the cold, or rather the cold which comes in via the windows. This cold air is more compact and heavier than the hot air in your living room, resulting in the cold air ‘pushing out’ the hot air. This will make the hot air disappear towards the ceiling, with the direct result that the heating has to work harder to get the room back to the same temperature. This is something you can counteract by, for example, fitting your home with insulating glass. Your home will lose less heat by fitting insulating glass. A great deal of heat will still be lost from the home with single glazing. This will naturally also mean you will need to spend more on heating up your home. This is because the heating has to work harder to ensure a room or area reaches the right temperature. Most homes in the Netherlands are now fitted with double glazing. These days even triple glazing, with three insulation layers, is an option for even better insulation.

Better insulation with roller shutters
The previous insulation examples have the disadvantageous effect of requiring a great deal of renovation work in order to realise a better insulated home. However, there is another possibility which can make your home more energy efficient. This is the installation of roller shutters in front of your windows. Roller shutters also have an insulating effect, resulting in the heat not being able to escape through the armour in front of your windows. Roller shutters double the insulation value of glass. The extra insulation created with the use of roller shutters will ensure you can avoid cold drafts, which means you will need to make less use of the heating during the cold months and will therefore be able to realise savings on your energy costs. You will also need to make a one off investment for the installation of roller shutters. However, roller shutters will definitely provide you with a sustainable solution. The roller shutter lamellae can’t get stuck or move away from each other, as they are interconnected. Plus they are insensitive to dust and moisture too!

You have the option of controlling your roller shutters with an app via your smartphone, providing you opt for roller shutters which are equipped with io-homecontrol. For example, you could close the roller shutters whilst you’re at work if you notice the outside temperature is much lower than forecast, which is why you hadn’t shut the roller shutters that morning. In addition, you also have the option of fitting the roller shutters with a time clock. You will only need to set the times you want the roller shutters to open in the morning and close in the evening once.

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Window decoration
There is also another way to ensure your home will lose less heat via the windows during the winter months and will allow less heat in during the hot summer period. This is by fitting your home with window decorations. Window decorations will stop the cold outside air coming in through the glass, allowing you to turn your heating down a little. Window decorations against your windows will also ensure the summer sunshine has no chance of entering your home, making sure it stays lovely and cool.

The exact insulating effect of your window decoration and therefore the exact amount you want to save on your energy bill will depend on various different factors: the type of window decoration, the size of your window, the material of your window decoration, the colour of your window decoration and the thickness of your window decoration. Would you like to purchase some window decorations, with the aim of combating heat and cold loss? Bear the following points in mind:

  • Wood, aluminium and plastic will stop more heat coming from the outside compared to window decorations made of fabric.
  • The more dense the structure of the material, the less this will allow heat in from the outside.
  • A clear light colour will reflect the incoming sunlight most effectively.

This is how you can efficiently deal with window decorations both in the summer and winter months: It goes without saying you want to be able to optimally benefit from any available sunshine during the winter period. Therefore make sure you open up the window decorations in the morning if you’re in for a sunny day. This will allow you enjoy the free heat coming off the sun’s rays and which will subsequently penetrate your home. You then close the window decorations again in the evening, once things start cooling down again. The window decoration therefore forms a shield in front of your window and leaves the cold outside.

You do the exact opposite during hot summer days. You close the window decorations in the morning, before you leave for work. Once the temperature starts to rise and the sun starts to shine, the window decoration in front of your window will keep the heat out, allowing you to come home to a cool house at the end of the day. You can open the window decorations again in the evening, once things have started cooling down, allowing you to take full advantage of the cooler air entering your home.

‘Take advantage of the free heat caused by the sun.’

All the tips mentioned so far are investments you can make in your own home. But there are also smaller adjustments which can already have a significant effect in the shorter term and which will result in much less of an investment. Following is a quick summary of a few simple tips!

Simple to realise tips

Standby killers
People often leave their devices on standby when they are not using them. From now on completely switch off any devices you are not using. Devices left on standby consume electricity too, this is referred to as standby power. A huge waste of all that energy you’re not actually using! So make sure you always pull the plugs out of their sockets, so you can be confident the device isn’t consuming any energy.

Furniture in front of radiators
Take a good look around your home too. Do you have any furniture positioned in front of radiators? If so, make sure the radiators aren’t blocked by anything. This is because the furniture is currently blocking the heat coming off the radiator.

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Thermostat to 15 degrees
Will you be at work all day? And will no one else be at home during the day? Then set the thermostat to 15 degrees. This will save you an average of 130 euro per year. If you also follow this tip at night and set the heating to 15 degrees an hour before going to bed, you will be able to save an extra average of 95 euro per year.

LED lighting
Do you still have halogen lights in your home? Then replace these with LED lighting. LED lighting uses up to 90 percent less electricity and will also last a great deal longer. Of course you could also opt to light a candle in the evening a little more frequently. This will save on energy, whilst also creating a lovely ambiance in your living room.

Energy label
Always check the energy label before purchasing an electrical product. This label runs from A+++ (very energy efficient) to G (very energy inefficient). Do bear in mind when making your purchase that an energy inefficient product will use more energy in the long-term and will therefore also result in higher costs.

You can always contact one of the Verano® partner for extra information about roller shutters or window decorations. They can help you with any possible questions you may have, or with making various different choices. Request a free brochure to find out about all the different possibilities. You will also receive information regarding your nearest dealer together with the brochure. And? Have you come up with some ideas about what you are going to do with the money you’re going to be saving in the long-term?

Good luck in your fight against the high energy bill!

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