How to keep your energy bills down this Christmas

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Christmas brings joy and excitement to homes across the UK, but at a high price…

During the count-down to December 25th, families use more gas and electricity than any other time of year. It’s easy to forget that, while you’re watching your festive favourites on television, cooking the Christmas turkey in the oven, or turning on the Christmas tree lights – you are using energy.

With many homeowners concerned about the rise in energy costs, now is the time to make some energy efficient changes to your traditional Christmas regime. Here are some practical tips that Zenith Home customers find useful when trying to conserve energy at Christmas:

Deck your halls with LED lights

Christmas light displays might look fantastic, but be prepared to pay a large energy bill at the end of the month. According to the Energy Saving Trust, if turned on regularly, Christmas lights displays can cost as much as £100 to power throughout December. To keep the costs down, make a habit of turning the outdoor lights on when you get home from work, and turning them off half an hour before you go to bed.
Also, switching your usual Christmas tree lights to LED or solar powered lights will cost six times less to run and save plenty on pennies on your energy bill. You can find a range of lights by searching online or taking a look in your local home ware store.

Ready your winter woollies

Something as simple as layering up your clothing will save a substantial amount of money on your energy bills as you won’t need to turn up the heating up. Stock up on woolly jumpers and thick socks to keep your-self warm while you’re indoors.
Adding a throw to your sofa is also an easy way to keep warm on weekends when you’re watching Christmas TV programmes.

Rock around a cosy conservatory

For those who entertain friends and family at Christmas, conservatories are a valuable extension to your living and dining space – but not if they are cold and uninviting. There may not be time before Christmas 2014, but next year make sure that your conservatory is fitted with A Rated PVCu windows and doors to make it comfortable for visiting guests. We frequently remind our Zenith customers that, according to the Energy Saving Trust, this can save up to £175 a year on your energy bills and will increase the security of your home.

Roast your chestnuts in an alternative cooker

Alternative cookers use less energy, so try a solar box cooker or a pressure cooker to cook your Christmas dinner, as they are a more energy-efficient option than a traditional oven.
You may also want to consider cooking several foods at once to make the most of the ovens energy. Steaming your Christmas dinner vegetables is much more energy efficient as the layered compartments of a steamer means that only one flame is used for cooking three types of vegetable.

When the weather outside is frightful…

The month of December is famed for its icy temperatures and cold winter winds. The Energy Saving Trust say that, by draught proofing your doors you can block out the cold draught and save £10-50 a year on your energy bills. Draught-free homes are much more comfortable at lower temperatures so you’ll be able to turn your thermostat right down.

Why not also light some festive candles instead of turning on the lights to save energy and warm up the home at the same time?

Phil Lamb

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