Turn Down and Save - James’ Experience
All figures and calculations are correct at the time of publication.

Turn Down and Save - James’ Experience

From November 2022 to March 2023, Loop ran a series of Turn Down and Save events. Loop customers were rewarded for taking the strain off the grid by using less electricity at peak times. Over the 12 events of the winter, Loop customers reduced peak demand 40MWh, with over £120,000 shared between our users. 

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At peak times it’s expensive for National Grid to balance supply and demand. National Grid pays some of the most expensive electricity generators to switch on at peak times. But it also pays factories and businesses to reduce their usage. This can often be cheaper than turning on more generators. Loop’s Turn Down and Save scheme extended the same offer to our customers. The idea was, if you can use less electricity during peak periods, Loop will pay you a reward. 

Here we’ll take a look at James and his family, see why they took part in the Turn Down and Save events, what they did during the events, and if it was worth it for them.

James’ story

James has been a Loop customer since July 2022. He first heard about Turn Down and Save on social media, when he was researching solar PV, in an effort for him and his family to be more sustainable and greener.

“We are in a lucky position that through the energy crisis we could afford to pay our bills, but like most people you wanted to do your bit to reduce energy usage and help tackle global warming.”

James and his wife also foster. They find that children who come to them are “not aware of the challenges of everyday life, including household bills, so getting them involved helps them better prepare for when they leave care”.

turn down and save - case study james

Getting the whole household involved

Nearly everyone in his house took part - “it’s of course difficult with teenagers, but on most occasions, we made it a bit fun by switching off household items, finding out what they cost, and seeing the energy monitor drop, and also by lighting candles.”

James says they all learned something during the events. “Before the Turn Down and Save events we used an energy monitor - but apart from myself no-one really took notice of it. Since we all got involved in the Turn Down and Save events, we all learned something”.

So what did James and his family do during the hour-long events? “We turned off all or most lights, and didn’t charge any devices. We didn’t use our electric oven, dishwasher, PC or games machine.”  

Towards the end of last winter’s Turn Down and Save scheme, James had solar panels and a home battery installed. This further helped as it meant he could use this to power devices during the events. But they still made sure that they used the washing machine or dishwasher earlier in the day or later in the evening.

turn down and save - case study james - washing machine

A change in behaviour

So did James and his family change their behaviour since participating? “Since the events, we’ve been more careful. The children are now more aware, especially my son - who has now gone to university and has to read meters, and sort out the household bills with his flatmates. He’s totally shocked by the cost! The Turn Down and Save events encouraged us to get solar panels and a battery at home, which has been brilliant - it’s reduced our bills by 80%.”

James says that the “best thing about the events was completing the challenges with the children, helping to educate them, and ultimately donating the money raised to charity.”

Overall, James says he had a really positive experience. “Educationally it was very valuable, in that these Turn Down and Save events encouraged our children to learn more about energy production.”

James says that the Turn Down and Save scheme was well worth it. “Our foster children knew nothing about energy bills and how to reduce them. This was a real eye-opener for them”.

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