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Local natural gas supplier, firmus energy, is encouraging homeowners to put their energy into Energy Saving Week 2016, which is running from 31 October to 6 November. Energy Saving Week is an industry-wide campaign to help people cut their fuel bills by tackling energy efficiency.  

Michael Scott, managing director of firmus energy, explains:  “We are delighted to be a part of this important initiative and we hope that our guidance will help families make their homes more energy efficient and save them money.

“At this time of year, the thought of a cosy, warm home is more appealing than ever and with Christmas fast-approaching, every penny counts; so it is the perfect time make sure your home is as energy efficient as possible!  All of our employees hold a specialist energy efficiency advice qualification following training by National Energy Action (NEA), the charity working to eradicate fuel poverty, and we regularly advise customers on ways to cut fuel bills.

“It is surprising how much extra money families can have if a home is made as energy efficient as possible.  One of the main ways householders are losing money is through the lack of energy efficiency of their boiler.  People may not know that boilers of around 15 years old are very inefficient and money spent on fuel for heating your home could be wasted.

“There are many grants available to help people to make the switch to natural gas and the current boiler scrappage deal offers householders £500 cashback when they convert.  Our customers have the reassurance that they will never run out of fuel as the colder nights come in as natural gas is piped directly to their home.  Among many other practical benefits, they also have an endless supply of instant hot water.”

There are also plenty of ‘free’ energy saving changes that can be made in and around your home, which can all add up and make a big difference to your bank account. For example:

  • Households can save around £35 a year just by remembering to turn appliances off standby.
  • Many of us are letting warmth, and our cash, escape by leaving curtains and doors open.  Draught-proofing windows and doors could save as much as £27 a year.
  • Insulation is also an important money saving measure – insulating your hot water cylinder with an 80mm jacket could save around £100 a year and installing 270mm of loft insulation could save up to £145 annually.
  • Even if you already have insulation in place, ensuring it is thick enough (270mm) can save precious funds, as can installing cavity wall insulation and a chimney draft excluder.
  • Having a bath regularly can also make a major splash in your bank account, as a shower is much more cost-effective.
  • Turning your room thermostat down by 1 degree could save around £80 per year.
  • Replacing all standard lightbulbs and halogen spotlights in your home with energy saving light-bulbs could save around £40 a year.

firmus energy, which now has around 80,000 customers across Northern Ireland, has been supplying natural gas to homes and businesses for over 10 years. For more information on energy saving and grants available, please visit www.firmusenergy.co.uk.