There is a lot I want to do to save money next year and I have a number of resolutions I want to put into place.
But, as well as saving money, I want my whole family much more conscious of our energy usage. Yes, energy costs money and keeping bills low is important but I am increasingly mindful that the earth is a finite resource and I firmly believe we all have to be aware of protecting it and encourage our children along that pathway too. I believe it’s important to be mindful of our energy consumption and how to minimise our impact on the environment; from thinking about how often you fly, to using reusable straws and turning lights off when you leave the room.
I feel it’s important in my role as a parent to encourage my children to be energy conscious. I want them to develop great habits around energy saving and for this to be really natural for them to live in as eco- and environmentally friendly life.
So I have good intentions and we have had a big family chat so without further ado here are our family energy-saving resolutions for 2018. You will see it includes the big and the little things we can do in our home.
Have a little look at EDF Energywise blog for loads of ideas and inspiration – the blog is excellent resource and it has really helped us make plans. Do pop over and have a look it is inspirational.
Our energy saving resolutions.
- Our first resolution is to turn our heating down by one degree on a permanent basis. According to EDF Energy’s article on ways to save on energy bills in winter, this can save us up to £80 a year which is pretty fantastic. I bet we will hardly even notice and if we do it is nothing a vest or shutting a few doors won’t solve! I think it’s great to encourage the kids to pop on another jumper or a pair of socks rather than automatically turn up the heating.
- Next, we plan to get a smart meter installed. The benefits of a smart meter are huge. It gives you a clear, real-time view of the energy you’re using and exactly what it’s costing and there will be no more estimated bills. With a smart meter, you’ll pay for the energy which is reassuring, a smart meter is a great way for you to keep track of your usage and expenditure.
- We plan to replace all our light bulbs with LED light bulbs. This is a very simple way to cut energy bills and conserve energy, despite the initial outlay being more over their lifetime an LED light bulb could shave off up to £180 from your energy bills, compared with an old-style bulb. If you do this throughout your home this is rather an epic saving (and I don’t know about you I am not a big fan of having to change light bulbs regularly!)
- There are some brilliant and easy ways to bring technology into your home to help you manage your energy use and in 2018 exploring these are one of our top intentions. We already have Alexa but I have just been reading the Smart Energy Solutions article on the EDF Energywise blog how Alexa can be so much more than a weather channel and music vessel, which is all we currently all we use her for (oh, and to tell the kids jokes and time the cooking). With the EDF Alexa skill, Alexa can be a super smart energy saver – it can tell you the balance of your energy bill, submit your meter reading, tell you your tariff end date or let you know the date of your next payment. It can also control your heating for you when you’re not at home. There are loads of other great app options too that can make a big difference and really give you control.
- I work at home each day by myself and I have this bizarre habit of filling the kettle right up to make just a coffee for one. Then I get distracted by my work and it cools down and is wasted so I do it all over again. A kettle should be filled with how much water you need to use and then that hot water should be used. Simples. A very rough estimate of what my thoughtless behaviour actually costs us around £40 a year*! I resolve to do better in 2018.
- My kids, like all kids these days it seems, love to play on consoles and computers and watch the TV a lot. All of these things drain energy especially if we leave them on standby when not in use. They are also not a great way for my kids to be physically active and social; two key components I want them to have in their lives. So we will continue to be firm and clear about limiting screen time in 2018. No more than one hour per day and the rest of the time, as much a possible we will enjoy the outdoors, crafting from nature and our recycling bin, reading, socialising, bike riding and having fun.
These are energy saving pursuits and just so much healthier, I could go on and on about the plans we have, these include – draught taping windows, considering insulating our loft, drinking tap water rather than constantly buying bottled water, using the car less and walking, scooting and cycling as a family more. I also need to check we are getting the best energy deal for us.
We need to keep mindful of our energy use at each turn, until these better ways just become a habit. There are so many ways to save both money and energy.
How are you planning to save energy as a family in 2018?