Save water to save energy and money

In support of the Energy Saving Trust’s Energy Saving Week (25 to 31 October) the Consumer Council for Water is encouraging consumers to take a look at where they may be able to save water, energy, and therefore money around the home.

Around three quarters of a household’s energy use relates to heating and hot water, for example, in baths or showers or for washing clothes or dishes. By taking simple steps to use water more efficiently, (especially hot water) families should see a reduction in their energy bill, and those who are charged for their water by meter should see a reduction in their water bill as well.

Dame Yve Buckland, Chair of the Consumer Council for Water, said: “If you’re looking for ways to save money; penny pinching does not have to be painful.  Taking five minutes to consider these very simple water and energy saving tips could pay off in the long run, and have the added benefit of helping to reduce your carbon footprint.”

The Consumer Council for Water and the Energy Saving Trust have come up with these top tips to help you avoid wasting water and energy:

• Replace worn washers on leaky taps. A dripping hot water tap wastes energy and over a year could unnecessarily add over £18 to your annual water bill.

• Shorten your shower. For every minute less you spend under your daily shower you could save between £5 and £10 off your energy bills over the year, or go one step further and install a water saving shower head, which can cut the amount of water used by about 30 per cent.

• When putting the kettle on to boil, only fill it with as much water as necessary. Two-thirds of us waste energy by boiling more water than we need.

• Make sure that the dishwasher or washing machine is completely full before turning it on, and avoid using the half load setting. Half-load cycles use much more than half the energy and water of a full load.

• Washing machines use huge amounts of energy, 90 per cent of which is through heating water. By reducing the temperature from 40 to 30 degrees, energy consumption will be reduced by 40 per cent.

• The hot water cylinder thermostat should be set at 60°C or 140°F. Any higher is a waste of energy and could lead to scalding.

• Insulate the hot water cistern to avoid wasting energy to keep it hot. Fitting a jacket that is at least 75mm thick could save around £35 each year.


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