10 energy-saving myths that cost you money

10 energy-saving myths that cost you money

1. Electricity costs less at night

For most of us, this is a myth. The majority of us pay a flat rate for each unit of electricity we use. However, energy can be cheaper in the evening if you have an Economy 7 tariff. Speak to your supplier if you think this could help you save money. To find out how much you could save on your gas and electricity bills with Yours switching, click here.

95% of the electricity used by phone chargers is wasted

2. Keeping your heating on low all the time saves money

The idea is that it uses more energy to heat up your house from cold than it does to keep it at a constant temperature. False! Only heating your home when needed is far more cost-effective. Why pay for a warm house when you're not home? Good insulation and a thermostat timer will make sure you're warm when you need it most.

3. Turning up the thermostat heats your home more quickly

No matter how high you set your thermostat, your boiler heats at the same rate. Turning up the thermostat will heat your home to a higher temperature, but at the same speed - then you’ll just have to turn it down a few degrees, wasting energy and money in the process!

4. Computers don't use energy when idle

Once a computer is on, there isn't much change in the amount of energy used, no matter what it's doing. Screen-savers also don't save energy. Monitors use over 50 per cent of the energy of the whole computer, so switch it off. Which brings us to our next myth…

5. Leaving on computers, lights and appliances uses less energy than switching them on and off

A tiny surge in electricity is created when an appliance is turned on, but this is much smaller than the energy wasted by running a device when you don't need it. So as a rule, switch it off! Using energy-efficient bulbs will also help you save while they are switched on.

6. The cost of energy-saving devices outweighs the savings

Such devices might cost more to buy, but the energy and money saved over the life of the product is a lot greater. Solar panels could save up to £150 per year, and nowadays you can even get energy-efficient water pumps.

7. Mobile phones don't use electricity once they've finished charging

False. In fact, your charger will consume energy even when the phone is no longer connected to it. 95 per cent of the electricity used by phone chargers in the UK is wasted, so help yourself save by unplugging it.

8. Leaving the water heater on is cheaper than turning it on and off

Lots of people with immersion heaters leave their tank on at all times so they don't run out of hot water. This could cost you a lot more than necessary. Only heat water when needed, and make sure your tank is insulated to keep water hot all day.

9. Washing-up by hand is cheaper than a dishwasher

Hand-washing a tack of dishes uses a lot of hot water. As long as you use your dishwasher effectively, you could save money. Make sure your dishwasher is full when you use it, and only use the eco-wash setting.

10. Using a portable electric heater will heat a room quickly

This method is quick but could cost you a small fortune. Electric heaters are among the most expensive types of heating. Instead, use more efficient central heating and a thermostat, timer and plenty of insulation to keep yourself snug.

Thanks to leading pump distributors, Pump Sales Direct.

  • There are more money-saving tips in every issue of Yours magazine, out every fortnight on a Tuesday.