DAD-OF-TWO Mark Thompson managed to slash £750 off his bills by turning off or selling his energy guzzling appliances.
Armed with a nifty money saving gadget, Mark has gone round EVERY room in his house to see how much his appliances cost to run – and was shocked by the results.
This story was originally published on September 3, 2022.
Mark used to work in the energy industry and lives with his wife Heather, who is also retired, in Northwich, Cheshire, and has two children – 26-year old Hannah and 22-year old Sally.
Mark decided to closely monitor how much energy his freezers, kettle, washing machine and dishwasher were using in April last year, when bills hiked, in a bid to slash costs.
He bought a smart plug to do this. They act like a second plug – you slot it into your socket, and then plug your appliance into it.
You can buy some models which tell you how much appliances cost you to run.
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They usually cost between £8 and £15 for cheaper models, and they're different from smart meters, as these won't tell you how much each individual appliance is costing.
Mark's energy supplier is Bulb, and on his current pay monthly variable tariff, each unit of electricity costs him 28p per kilowatt hour.
Some appliances use more energy than others to run – and Mark was astonished to see how much he was spending on some of them.
The biggest cost drain was his old freezer, which was costing him around 68p a day to run – amounting to a whopping £250 a year.
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He has two, so that costs him £500 a year.
His kettle costs him 1p per cup to run – and he makes a dozen cups a day. Over the year, that costs him £43.80.
He uses his dishwasher three times a week, which costs 37p – totalling £57.72 over the year.
Popping the washing machine on costs him 12p a spin and he uses it three times a week – which racks up to £18.72 a year.
His printer costs him £15 a year because he was leaving it on standby.
"It's a great opportunity to see how much their appliances are costing- you often spend a fortune running them," he said.
He's made some big changes around the house to slash his energy bill, and reckons he'll now save about £750 a year.
"I'm going to get rid of my extra freezer and sell it – I can't justify the costs.
"I now turn appliances off at the plug if I know they are big energy guzzlers."
He puts post-it notes on his appliances, with how much they cost to run scribbled on them as a reminder to use them sparingly.
He has also put a felt tip mark on his kettle so he knows where to fill up to for two cups of tea – which helps him avoid overfilling it and wasting energy.
He knows the cost of running his appliances will soar once more when energy bills go up to £3,549 a year on average – which is why he's making changes now.
"Now I have a better understanding of what uses what.
"Smart plugs can cost up to £15 which is quite expensive, but it's definitely worth it for me considering the savings I'm making."
He gives other households tips on lowering their energy bills on his blog, www.getenergysavvy.info.
How else can you slash costs around the house?
Tumble dryers are one of the biggest energy guzzlers, costing around £1.27 per cycle, according to Uswitch.
Turn it off at the switch and use a clothes horse instead to dry your clothes for free.
Turning your thermostat down just one degree can save you £100, the Energy Saving Trust says.
While properly draught proofing your house can save £45 a year – you can use old socks and towels to put up against your door.
Checking your boiler settings could save you £95 a year – switch off the "comfort" mode and turn the flow temperature down.
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