Going to university is the perfect time to discover who you are and learn how stand on your own two feet. Late nights, lie-ins, no parents and partying are all part of what makes the student life great, but there’s also accommodation and bills to think about.
Saving energy can be hard as a student, especially if you’re not used to tracking your own consumption. However, with a few simple tips and tricks, you can keep your bills down and save yourself some money to spend on more important things! The following are 8 easy energy saving tips for students.
1) Switch the lights off or replace them
It might seem obvious, but you’d be amazed how much of a difference this can make to energy consumption. Traditional lightbulbs turn electricity into 95% heat and 5% light. So, replacing them with low energy lighting will mean you’re using 90% less energy than regular bulbs. If you can’t afford this option then simply remember to turn the lights off when they’re not in use.
2) Turn down the thermostat
Although it’s tempting to only turn off radiators, it won’t save you money as the thermostat keeps the heating on until the target temperature is reached. By turning the thermostat down you could potentially shave 10% off your heating bill.
3) Embrace natural light
When the sun is shining, open the blinds and let the light in. There’s no better source of free energy!
4) Dry your clothes naturally
Leaving clothes to dry on a radiator might be the easy option, but it’s not the best way to save money. Your clothes will absorb heat from the radiator and pour condensation into the house, creating damp and mould. Drying your clothes on a rack is cheaper and you avoid the risk of shrinking that comes with using a tumble drier.
5) Save water when you make a coffee
Coffee is a staple part of any student diet, especially when working on assignments late into the night. So, when boiling a kettle make sure you only fill it with the amount water that you need. Start by pouring cold water into a mug and use it as a measuring gauge to fill the kettle and see how much hot water is needed.
6) Be smart with your washing machine
When using a washing machine it’s important to remember two things: wash in full loads and set the temperature to 30 degrees. Most washing machines use the same amount of water no matter how full they are, so turning up the temperature is unnecessary.
7) Give your boiler a break
During the summer holidays it’s worth turning off the boiler because there’s no point heating water if nobody’s around. However, it’s worth keeping the boiler running on a low temperature during the Christmas break so pipes don’t freeze and burst. The last thing you want to come back to in the New Year is a flooded house!
8) Wrap up warm
When winter comes it’s time to get out the sweaters, jackets and insulated socks. By wearing warm clothing you’re less likely to turn the heating up. Add an extra blanket to the bed to stay cosy during the night.
Want to take things one step further? Check out these 5 great energy efficiency apps.