Going on holiday? An energy saving checklist

If you’re about to head away for a long holiday, you certainly don’t want to be fretting about your home energy use while you’re relaxing on the beach.

By taking a few simple steps, you can keep your home energy consumption as close to rock-bottom as possible during that time.

Here’s a quick and easy checklist:

1. Turn your boiler off

Heating and hot water is the biggest contributor to most people’s fuel bills. But if you’re travelling in the warmer summer months, then you’ll need neither to be on. You can turn your boiler off entirely.  

Of course, it’s different in the cold winter, when you’ll need the heating on at least some of the time to stop pipes from freezing. If you have a smart thermostat, depending on the model, it will automatically turn down the heating when you’re away to help save
energy, while ensuring it's warm enough to prevent your pipes from freezing.

2. Don’t leave appliances on standby

You may already be aware that appliances continue to drain energy, even when left on standby. This, alongside keeping appliances like fridges and freezers permanently on, is called ‘Phantom Load’.

So, walk from room to room turning off everything at the plug - television, microwave, any devices left on charge, heated towel rails, smart speakers, the lot.

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You might have to rummage around to find the plugs or wall switches for some appliances, such as your electric shower – this can be turned off at the wall too.

Consider your router; this can go off unless you need it to control smart home devices while you’re away. Likewise, you could turn off your set-top box, unless you have programmes set to record.

3. Turn off lights

Don’t forget to turn those lights off. Or at least most of them - you may want to put some on an automatic timer for the sake of security.

If you invest in smart lighting then you can control your lights remotely, using an app on your phone.

If you’re going to use automatic lights while away, consider switching to LED lighting which are more energy-efficient and can save you money in the long term. Don’t forget, you can even get LED bulbs for your outside security lights!

4. Leave a full freezer

You may be surprised to know that to keep your fridge and freezer running as efficiently as possible - and better retain the cold - it’s best to keep them full, even if that means adding bags of ice to your freezer or a jug of water in your fridge.

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Also, before you go, check your fridge is set at 5 degrees Celsius or less.

5. Keep your curtains open

If temperatures are forecast to stay hot at home while you’re away, you might be tempted to draw the curtains to keep your house cool. But bear in mind that keeping your curtains drawn day after day could be taken as a sign that your home is empty by any vigilant burglars.

6. Prepare for your return

If you get a smart thermostat you can turn the heating and hot water back on in time for when you get back home.

Peace of mind

If you can spare time to quickly put this checklist into action next time you go away, then that will be one less thing to worry about when you’re on holiday. Bon voyage!

• • •

With Loop, you can find out how you use electricity, then make smart decisions about using less. 

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