In support of Energy Saving Trust’s Energy Saving Week (20 to 26 October) the Consumer Council for Water is encouraging consumers to take a look at where they may be wasting water, energy, and therefore money around the home.
Around three quarters of a household’s energy use relates to heating and hot water use, for example, in baths or showers or for washing clothes or dishes.
By cutting water wastage through the following easy steps, 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.
- Replace worn washers on leaky taps. A dripping hot water tap wastes energy and in one week wastes enough hot water to fill half a bath.
- Take a five minute shower instead of a bath, 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 60C or 140F. Any higher is a waste of energy and could lead to scalding; any lower and there may a risk of legionella.
- Insulate the boiler to avoid wasting energy to keep it hot. Fitting a jacket to the boiler that is at least 75mm thick could save around £30 each year.
Dame Yve Buckland, Chair of the Consumer Council for Water, said: “At a time when so many household bills are rising, people may be looking for ways to make every penny count. Taking five minutes to consider these water and energy saving tips could pay off in the long run, and have the added benefit of helping to reduce your carbon footprint.”
A full list of water saving tips is available at http://www.ccwater.org.uk