Northern Ireland Gas Savings Summary 2021
This factsheet from the Energy Saving Trust explores methods to save money in gas heated homes.
This information is based on a typical three-bedroom semi-detached gas heated house, with an 88% efficient gas boiler and average gas tariff of 5.63p/kWh and electricity tariff of 20.33p/kWh; correct as of October 2021.
Please do not combine savings without checking with Energy Saving Trust beforehand. Some savings directly affect the savings of others and may need to be recalculated if combined.
You can also read the PDF version of this factsheet.Back to top
- The majority of homes have some loft insulation, but a lot don’t have the recommended 270mm depth.
- Topping up your loft insulation from 120mm to 270mm could save around £18 and 55kg of carbon dioxide a year.
- If you have no loft insulation installing 270mm of new insulation could save up to £190 and 580kg of carbon dioxide a year.
- Topping up your loft insulation from 120mm to 270mm and installing cavity wall insulation could save you up to £225 and 690kg of carbon dioxide a year.
- Cavity wall insulation could save up to £215 and 650kg of carbon dioxide a year.
- External or internal solid wall insulation can save around £290 and 880kg of carbon dioxide a year.
- 5% of heat in an uninsulated home is lost through our floors.
- Solid floor insulation could save around £60 and 175kg of carbon dioxide a year.
- Suspended timber floor insulation could save around £60 and 175kg of carbon dioxide a year.
Hot water cylinders
- Insulating an uninsulated hot water cylinder with an 80mm jacket could save around £120 and 490kg of carbon dioxide a year.
- Topping up your hot water cylinder insulation from 25mm to 80mm jacket could save around £25 and 110kg of carbon dioxide a year.
- Exposed pipes may be losing the heat the boiler is generating to heat your home. Although it’s leaking into your home, it’s not heating the rooms you want therefore is wasting energy.
- Insulating pipes that are exposed within your house could save you around £5 and 18kg of carbon dioxide a year.
Draught proofing: chimney, doors and windows
- If a fireplace is not used then it can cause a lot of draughts, insulating your chimney will make your home feel warmer.
- A chimney draught excluder can save around £25 and 75kg of carbon dioxide a year.
- Draught-proofing windows and doors can save around £35 and 105kg of carbon dioxide a year.
- Double and triple glazing reduce the rate of heat loss in a home, however triple glazing also reduces the amount of heat you gain from the sun, try installing triple glazing on the north side of your home and double glazing on the south side.
- Installing A++ rated double glazing in an entirely single-glazed home could save around £130 and 400kg of carbon dioxide a year.
- Installing B-rated double glazing in an entirely single-glazed home could save around £110 and 340kg of carbon dioxide a year.
- Secondary glazing is a fitted pane of glass fixed to the inside framing of the window. It’s useful for homes that can’t replace windows due to planning restraints.
- Installing secondary glazing in an entirely single glazed home could save around £95 and 295kg of carbon dioxide a year.
2) Heating savings
Boilers and controls
- Replacing an old G-rated oil boiler with some controls, with an A-rated gas boiler with a full set of heating controls could save around £145 and 3,300kg of carbon dioxide a year. *
- Room thermostats allow you to set the temperature your home heats up to and maintains. A heating programmer allows you to set your heating to come on and turn off at certain times of the day, set it up to suit your lifestyle. Thermostatic radiator valves (TRVs) let you to turn up and down the heat given off by each radiator.
- Installing and correctly using a full set of controls on your heating system so you are in full control of how you heat your home could save you around £95 a year and 305kg of carbon dioxide a year.
*Based on an efficiency improvement from 65% to 90% for a condensing gas boiler, assumes original non-condensing boiler having some controls (programmer and room thermostat) with the A rated boiler having a full set of controls (programmer, room thermostat and TRVs).
Electric storage heaters
- If you have electric heating, upgrading your old electric storage heaters to modern high heat retention storage heaters could save you around £295 on your annual energy bills, reducing emissions by 630kg of carbon dioxide a year. *
*Based on an average E7 price of 9.33p/kWh
- Installing reflective radiator panels in a house with uninsulated cavity walls or solid walls could save up to £18 to £20 and 70kg to 75kg of carbon dioxide every year. *
*Needs to be installed behind radiators on external walls.Back to top
3) Energy-efficient behaviour savings
Smart meters and energy monitors
- A smart meter lets you see where you’re wasting energy in your home. How much you could save will vary depending on your home's energy use and how much you make use of the energy monitor. There are no plans to roll out smart meters in Northern Ireland but you might be interested in getting an in-home display to see when you use energy.
- The Government estimates that with access to the increased information on energy use that a smart meter and energy monitor can provide, the average UK household could reduce electricity usage by around 3% and gas use by around
Washing and drying
- Setting your washing machine to wash at 30 degrees rather than higher temperatures will save around £10 a year on energy bills and around 12kg of carbon dioxide.
- Setting your washing machine to wash at 30 degrees uses around 57% less electricity than washing at higher temperatures.
- You can save on average £40 a year on your electricity bill, and 50kg carbon dioxide in emissions, by line drying clothes instead of using a tumble dryer during the summer.
- Only filling the kettle up with as much water as you need could save around £8 in energy bills a year.
- Your room thermostat switches your heating system on and off according to the set temperature. A common misconception is that turning your thermostat up will heat up your home quicker; but all that will do is heat your home to a higher temperature at the same rate. Insulation increases the speed your home heats up as less heat is being lost through the building.
- Turning your central heating thermostat down by 1 degree could save you £80 and 300kg of carbon dioxide every year.*
*Based on turning down a room thermostat from 22 degrees to 21 degrees in the main living areas.
Switching it off
- Avoiding standby and turning appliances off when you’re not using them could save £40 and up to 45kg of carbon dioxide ever year. *
- Turning off your lights when you don't need them could save you around £14 on your annual energy bills, and avoid 16kg of carbon dioxide emissions a year.
*This saving includes all appliances, consumer electronics, lights and chargers that have been left on standby mode or have been left on and not in use.Back to top
4) Home appliances
- The energy label for cold appliances has rescaled; that means some of the appliances have had their energy ratings changed. Make sure you keep a look out for the new label that has the UK flag and the word 'Energ' at the top.
- Check the new energy ratings when looking for a new cold appliance. The new labels go from A to G with A being the most energy efficient; this means they will use less electricity, they will be more sustainable and cost you less to run.
- When buying a new freezer, choosing a E-rated freezer over a G-rated model will save you around £25 in energy bills and 25kg carbon dioxide a year.
- When buying a new fridge, choosing a D-rated fridge over a G-rated model will save you around £10 in energy bills and 11kg carbon dioxide a year.
- When buying a new fridge freezer, choosing a D-rated fridge freezer over a G-rated model will save you around £30 in energy bills and 30kg carbon dioxide a year.
- The energy label for most wet appliances has rescaled; that means some of the appliances have had their energy ratings changed. Make sure you keep a look out for the new label that has the UK flag and the word 'Energ' at the top. This new energy label applies to dishwashers and washing machines. Tumble driers are on a A+++-G scale, but are due to be rescaled in late 2021.
- Check the new energy ratings when looking for a new wet appliance. The new labels go from A to G with A being the most energy efficient; this means they will use less electricity, costing you less to run. Tumble drier labels go from A+++ to D, with A+++ being the most energy efficient.
- When buying a new washing machine, choosing an A-rated washing machine over a D-rated one could save you around £8 and 9kg carbon dioxide a year.
- Choosing a D-rated dishwasher over a G-rated one could save you around £14 and 16kg carbon dioxide a year.
- Choosing an A+++ non-vented tumble dryer over a A-rated one could save you around £35 and 40kg carbon dioxide a year.
5) Domestic computing
- Choosing a laptop over a desktop and reducing standby could save up to £25 and 25kg of carbon dioxide every year.
- When turned on, tablets use on average 68% less power than laptops.*
*Based on weighted average maximum power draw from 32 tablets compared with the average power draw from laptops.Back to top
- In 2019, 47% of light bulbs in homes were energy saving bulbs (combination of compact fluorescent lamps and LEDs), 51% were halogens and 3% were traditional incandescent light bulbs.
- LEDs are the most energy efficient bulbs you can buy, followed by compact fluorescent lamps. Whilst halogen bulbs can still be bought in the UK, they have much lower efficiencies than their LED or other energy saving equivalents.
- By replacing all the remaining standard incandescent and halogen bulbs in your home with energy saving LEDs, the average household could save around £35 a year from your energy bills, and 40kg of carbon dioxide every year.
- Choosing an F-rated 65”TV over a G-rated 65”TV could save you almost £25 and 30kg carbon dioxide a year.
- In general, smaller TVs use less energy. Choosing a 32'' LCD over a 42'' LCD TV could save £15 and 16kg of carbon dioxide a year.
- You could save around £25 off their yearly gas bills by replacing your inefficient shower head with a water efficient one. *
- Spending one minute less in the shower each day could save as much as £15 a year in the average household. **
*Assumes that the family replace their 9.8 litre a min showerhead with a 7.7 litre a minute showerhead and take on average 5.3 showers of 7.6 minutes each a week.
**Based on a power shower with a flow rate of 9.8 litres a minute.
- Using a bowl to wash up rather than leaving the hot tap running saves a lot of water; a typical 10 litre washing up bowl fills up in just 95 seconds.
- By fitting a dual flush mechanism to an old toilet, a four person household could save over 50,000 litres of water a year.
9) Find out more
You can visit the Energy Saving Trust website or follow their social media channels:Back to top
10) For FREE Northern Ireland help and advice
Householders can call the Northern Ireland Energy Advice Line, managed by The Housing Executive on 0800 111 4455 for:
- Free advice on the best ways to save energy in the home.
- Details of local grants or discounts to help with the cost of energy efficiency improvements.