Government plans are to reduce carbon emissions by 34% for 2020. There are many ways you can make your property more energy efficient. This will help achieve the government’s targets and also save you money on bills.

Around 40% of carbon emissions are attributed to the transport and residential sectors, and many people feel their contribution won’t make a difference.

However, in 2008 the UK reduced emissions by 8.7% and in 2009; a further 9.8% was cut. There are many factors that have contributed to this success over the last few years, especially with the rise in renewable energy usage.

The average household spends £1230 on fuel bills every year, and essentially, this is at least 50% more than you should be throwing away. This is because of the lack of energy saving methods in the home.

However, there are energy and money saving systems that do not require too much time or investment.

All houses, either bought, sold or rented, require an Energy Performance Certificate. This is, for all intents and purposes, an assessment of how energy efficient a certain property is.

The categories run from A to G, with A being the efficient.

Making your home more energy efficient

So how can you boost your home’s energy efficiency rating, without spending too much in the process?

One of the best forms of heat retention, that does not cost too much, is draught proofing. Draughts can occur anywhere, from windows and doors, to floorboards and skirting boards. The latter is very easy to deal with, and you can use a sealant paste to fill in gaps between the floorboards or skirting.

However, this doesn’t deal with the bigger picture. By reducing the draughts in your home, you’ll keep your house warm in the winter and keep out heat in the summer.

If you can’t afford to replace doors and windows in your home then you may want to consider some of the following:

  • draught proof door compression seals
  • draught proof letter box
  • draught proof door wiper seals
  • thermal curtain linings
  • sausage dog draught excluders.

Improving your homes insulation

Insulation is another fantastic way of improving your home’s energy efficiency and loft insulation is by far the cheapest and easiest measure. Plus, the more you install, the greater the efficiency.

Loft insulation reduces heat loss and the installation is even subsidised by energy suppliers. Also, it can be FREE for qualifying residents – mainly home’s with a low income and for those over 70.

Also, if you’re looking for a ‘green’ option for loft installation, thermafleece is available. Thermafleece is one of the most sustainable and best performing loft insulation ranges, and is made purely from sheep’s wool.

Another way to maximize the heat retention in your home is with wall cavity insulation. Like loft insulation, there are possibilities for a subsidised cost or even free installation.

The idea behind having wall cavities insulated is to stop heat entering the wall space, particularly in winter. This will then limit how often you need to raise the heating temperature during the colder months.

Home insulation for windows and doors

Every door and window in your home has the potential to leak heat. Therefore, it may be a cheaper long term option to replace droughty windows and doors with more energy efficient versions.

The initial installation is costly, but the money saved from your heating bills can pay this back much quicker than you’d expect.

Some of the possibilities include:

  • Double glazing
  • Triple glazing
  • Thermal glass/solar glass
  • Draught proof replacement doors

Not all windows and doors can actually be replaced. Some, due to certain specifications, have to be left in their original frames. These exceptions would include listed buildings and properties in conservation or world heritage sites.

To find out if your property would fall under such regulations, or for more information, contact your local planning officer.