As we face into the start of a new year – with all its possibilities – here at Power NI we're delighted to share the final instalment of our #HereToHelp series. This time, we’re looking at four ways to optimise your home during January.
Along with the brilliant Sarah (AKA @life.home.loves) and Jill (@homeatrosecottage), we’ve been sharing lots of #HereToHelp hacks, to keep your home appliances running as efficiently as possible, saving you money in the process. We’ve really enjoyed the series and hope you have too! To finish off, this week’s content is all about January hacks – Hack-an-uary, if you will. Most of us are on a real budget during this particular month, following on from the frivolities of the festive season. With that in mind, it pays to have as many handy hacks up our sleeves as possible when it comes to efficiency in the home. The following should help you conserve some energy and in turn, save money at a time when it’s needed most.
Caulk the Cracks House feel a bit chilly? This is often due to draughts moving through openings (doors, windows, cracks) within the home. Rather than cranking up the heating, do a little investigation to see where cold air might be sneaking from room to room. Caulking is a cheap and easy way to fill in any rogue cracks between stationary objects like window frames and doors. And a caulking gun is quite fun to use! Just pipe out a straight line into any cracks to seal them up, and you should find draughts significantly reduced. Weatherstripping meanwhile is like a roll of foam insulation that can be used around anything that moves, like the door itself. Cut off the right amount and slot it in, to keep things nice and snug.
Let There be (LED) Light Replacing just a handful of bulbs in your home with energy-efficient options is always worth doing. Though the bulbs themselves may be more expensive, they’re up to ten times more energy-efficient, saving you money in the long run. Plus, LED, CFL and halogen incandescent bulbs all last longer too, meaning you’ll spend less money replacing bulbs throughout the year.
Space Heater This one’s especially applicable to those who work from home. Rather than sticking the heating on whenever the house starts to feel chilly, why not invest in an electric space heater? There are budget-friendly models available, and they’re great for instantly warming up a small area – like the room where you work from, for example. A quick blast of this appliance will work wonders while saving energy, as it won’t involve heating the entire house each time.
Smart Thermostat Longer term, it’s worth looking at a smart thermostat. These clever gadgets learn your behaviours over time, adjusting your settings to reflect your unique home habits. For example, maybe you work from home on Tuesdays, but are always in the office on Wednesdays. The thermostat will learn when to keep the house at a steady temperature, and when it’s OK to leave the heating off. There are lots of these Wi-Fi enabled products on the market, and they won’t break the bank.
And that’s it for our #HereToHelp series. We hope that you benefitted from our various tips over the last few weeks; we certainly enjoyed putting the series together. Don’t forget to give us a follow on Instagram to stay up to date on Power NI news. And check out Sarah and Jill’s pages for more brilliant advice on everything home-related!