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Energy saving advice

There is clear scientific evidence to show that our climate is changing because of greenhouse gas emissions from human activity.

If you reduce the amount of energy you use in the home, not only will you cut your energy bills, but you will be playing your part in reducing your impact on climate change.

The bulk of the UK's emissions come from our energy consumption. The largest contributor to these emissions is carbon dioxide (CO2), which is emitted when fossil fuels (such as coal, oil and gas) are burnt to provide energy for our homes, schools, businesses and transport.

Using energy more efficiently is an essential part of the UK's strategy for reducing carbon emissions.

Energy saving advice for residents

We would like to help you cut fuel bills by reducing energy usage. Here are some energy saving tips:

  1. Turn electrical appliances off at the plug when not in use.

  2. Use a 30°C wash programme. Detergents are designed for washing at 30°C.

  3. Hang your washing out to dry instead of using a tumble dryer.

  4. When using your kettle, only boil the amount of water you need.

  5. Install a  smart meter or use an energy monitor to give real time information on energy use.

  6. Turning your central heating thermostat down, even by just 1°C, can save money.

  7. Loft insulation reduces heat loss through a roof space: the thicker it is, the more you save. (Check heat loss from your home using our aerial thermal imaging map, see below.)

  8. Thirty per cent of your heat is lost from your walls, so install cavity wall insulation to reduce energy bills.

  9. Daught proof doors and windows to prevent heat loss.

  10. Insulate your hot water cylinder.

  11. Use the  Home Energy Check to find cost effective home improvements you could make.

  12. Reduce, reuse and recycle! Find out what can be recycled with our A to Z recycling directory.

Generate your own energy

Find out about renewable energy schemes and grants to help you make improvements in your home. The council has an  interest free loan for homeowners installing solar thermal panels for hot water, biomass boilers and heat pumps.

If you install renewable heat generating technologies you may be able to claim the  renewable heat incentive.

Electricity suppliers may pay you a  Feed-in Tariff if you generate electricity through the use of solar panels or a wind turbine.

Thermal imaging mapping

Thermal imaging is a useful tool in determining where energy might be being wasted. The council lends out a thermal imaging camera for residents to carry out a detailed heat loss survey of their property.

We conducted an aerial heat loss survey using thermal imaging in December 2014 and January 2015. The aerial heat loss survey of Guildford borough was captured on four separate nights on:

  • Monday 8 December 2014

  • Saturday 13 December 2014

  • Saturday 24 January 2015

  • Monday 26 January 2015

The survey enables residents to gain an indication of how much heat is lost from their house.

Follow these steps to view the heat loss for your property:

  1. Enter your postcode, then click on the target symbol to see your readout

  2. To understand the colour of heat loss the values relate to, click on map layers

  3. To expand the map, click on the <>

The colour on the map represents nine different levels of heat loss from properties within Guildford borough. These nine levels have been grouped into three categories (high, moderate and low heat loss). The heat loss index is an average value of how much heat is being lost from the building, relative to the rest of the area surveyed.

When you look at the survey, please note that:

  • The image is a snapshot of how much heat a property was losing when the survey was undertaken.

  • The amount of heat a building loses can be influenced by many factors:

    • Whether the heating was on during the night of the survey

    • The building materials used in constructing the property

    • Pockets of warm air caused by heat loss through walls or from nearby buildings

    • What affects the heat loss from a building is mainly due to the level of heating on in the property (or not as the case might be), and the effectiveness of the insulation in the roof. It is important to remember that a low heat reading (which looks like a good insulation result) might be due to the fact that no heating was on at the property prior to the survey taking place, for example if the occupants were away at the time, the property was vacant, or residents did not have their heating on.

1. High Heat Loss (170 - 255)

The building has high heat loss, which means a large proportion of heat from the building is escaping through the roof of your property. Money can be saved on fuel bills by installing cavity wall and loft insulation and through simple draught proofing measures.

2. Moderate Heat Loss (85 -169)

The building has moderate heat loss, which means some heat is escaping through the roof. You may have installed some insulation within the property, however, there are additional measures which can be taken to reduce your energy bill. For instance, you may need the insulation in your loft topping up, or you may need to re-programme your heating controls to help reduce your energy bills.

3. Low Heat Loss (0 - 84)

The building has low heat loss, which is an indication that the building is well insulated with minimal heat loss. In some cases, the building may have been vacant during the time of the survey with no heating on, or the building may have little heating on. There may still be some improvements you can make on saving energy within your property, for instance, turning lights off when not required or reducing the temperature of the building.

Did you know that 25% of the heat lost from your home is through an uninsulated roof? And another 35% is lost through uninsulated walls. Improving the insulation of your property can save you money on your fuel bills. For information and advice on how best to insulate your property please contact Action Surrey energy advice service (see contact details below).

Further information

Action Surrey offers free impartial energy advice across Surrey and is part funded by Surrey's districts, boroughs and county council.

Advice includes what energy efficiency improvements can be made to your property, how they work and what the benefits would be for your property. Action Surrey also manages a network of local trusted installers who can install a variety of measures.

Tel: 0800 783 2503
Email: info@actionsurrey.org
Action Surrey website