As a homeowner there are many things you can do to make your home an eco-friendlier household.
Simple sustainable switches can have a big impact, helping to protect the planet and your pennies.
Here at Lansdown Insurance Brokers, our Property Insurance Team understand the increased need for households to become more eco-friendly. That’s why we’ve outlined 10 swaps and small changes you can make – starting today.
1.Heat up Your House – Switching Heating Source
The majority of households use four different fuels, ranging from gas boilers, oil, electric boilers and biomass boilers. However, with heating gas to be phased out in new-build homes by 2025 and all gas boilers by 2035, it’s important to start looking at alternative heating solutions for our homes.
It’s important to service your existing boiler regularly. By having your boiler serviced at least once a year maximises heat energy out of the fuel it burns, lowering heating bills and minimising carbon emissions.
An option is to try heat pumps, transferring heat from a source (such as the soil from the garden) to another location (the hot-water system in your house).
It’s easy to see why they have become an increased popular heating choice in the UK in recent years, with Heat Pumps only using a small amount of electricity, reducing utility bills and providing a low-carbon alternative to heating homes.
Enjoy that sunshine!
Solar thermal panels are often used in conjunction with heat pumps, using heat from the sun to help provide heating needs. Although the initial investment can be significant, by installing solar panels, you can generate your own renewable electricity.
Use the solar energy calculator as to the benefits you may see from installing a solar photovoltaic (PV) system.
One for the future
Although only at the prototype phase, hydrogen boilers produce no carbon dioxide and can be manufactured from either water using electricity as a renewable energy source, or from natural gas.
How long ago did you check your insultation?
Although initially this is a more expensive method, ensuring your home is insulated correctly is one of the most cost-effective ways to save money in the future. Having correct insulation allows essential heat to be retained inside, creating an eco-friendly thermal-efficient home.
- Draft excluders
Ever thought about using draft excluders? A draft will always make you feel colder and therefore you’re inclined to turn up the heating. Draft excluders offer a stylish yet practical addition to your home.
Top Tip – seal gaps around doors and windows to stop heat escaping and cold air entering the house.
3. Double or even triple glazing
With the winter months fast approaching, make sure you’re cutting down on the cost of heating whilst lowering carbon dioxide emissions and install double or triple glazed windows.
4. The key to recycling successfully
Always double check items to see if they are recyclable. Regular items include plastic, cardboard, paper and food waste.
The UK throws away around 9.5 million tonnes of food waste in a single year. Many of us are guilty of throwing away food, but with chefs creating delicious meals out of ‘food waste’ there’s no need blame lack of imagination.
To cut down on food waste, try to plan your meals in advance and eat seasonally produced food.
Top tip – have visible recycling bins in the kitchen and in as many rooms in the house as possible.
5. Eco Friendly products
Bathroom products are often forgotten, so it’s important to look for alternatives such as Bamboo paper.
You can also make some changes to the products you use for your hair. From refillable shampoo and conditioner containers to the contents itself, you can now purchase ethical and sustainable hair products.
Don’t forget to put a recycling bin the bathroom also!
6. Use Eco-Cleaning products
Did you know a lot of mainstream cleaning products contain ingredients that are harmful to the environment? Luckily for us, we can now shop safely with several environmentally friendly cleaning alternatives now available in our local supermarkets.
Popular eco-friendly products and brands include:
7. Lightbulb moments
Don’t forget to always purchase environmentally friendly LED lightbulbs, each one saves on average 100kgs of C02 a year!
8. Turn it off
With energy bills expected to increase this winter, it’s more important than ever to reduce your energy usage to help save the environment.
Here’s a few tips:
- The easiest way to save energy is to turn off any items you’re not using and even unplug as they could sill be using some energy.
- Make sure you don’t charge your phone overnight. Most phones only take a few hours to charge, if you’re leaving yours on charge throughout the night this is wasting both electricity and money.
- Wash clothes on lower temperatures. It’s a known fact that washing at a lower temperature uses less energy and still keeps our favourite tops clean!
- If you’re making just one cup of tea, there’s no need to fill the kettle to the top. You only need enough water for one boiling cup. The more water you boil, the more energy will be wasted.
9. Redecorate with water-based paints
Look for water-based paints when decorating your home. Many of the paints currently used to decorate are oil-based, meaning they’re not as eco-friendly as they could be.
Take a look at eco-friendly painting brands and products below:
10. Check the label
The new energy labels for TVs, fridges, dishwashers, washing machines and washer dryers are here.
All new labels now include a QR code, meaning you can now access more detailed information about the product and see how efficient and environmentally friendly the appliance is. For more information about the labelling system, including information for consumers, retailers and manufacturers, visit energylabel.org.uk.
Lansdown Insurance Brokers are specialists in Block of flats Insurance, Landlords Insurance and Home Insurance. We are able to provide flexible policies to suit individual client needs and provide advice on what cover is needed. For more information call the team on 01242 524498.