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Self Help Advice

Behavioural changes save energy and money without spending a cent!

How do we use energy in the home?

Cooking 3%

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Lighting 6%

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Small power 7%

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Space heating 60%

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Domestic hot water 24%

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Source SEAI. For a full list of energy saving tips and some real life case studies with real money savings visit the SEAI website.

DIY tips - small jobs, big savings

There are lots of things you can do to save yourself energy and money in your home. We’ve selected some expert advice for you to use.

Prevent draughts

Fitting draught excluders around windows and doors, where no draught protection is in place, can cut heat loss by as much as 20% in winter. B&Q has an extensive range of draught excluders including window and door seals, door brush strips, letterbox draught excluders and keyhole covers.

How to install

To mount door brush strips, letterbox draught excluders and keyhole covers, simply screw them to relevant areas on the inside of your door. To install window and door seals, assess the gap between your windows or doors to see what type of seal you need. Begin by peeling off around 150mm of the backing paper to expose the adhesive. Work your way from the top of the window or door to the bottom and cut to exact length. Repeat this operation for the other vertical side(s), and horizontal section(s).

Chimney balloons

Chimney balloons stop draughts coming down your chimney and heat escaping up it. They are easy to install and remove and can be used again and again.

How to install

Simply place the balloon into your chimney and inflate. To remove deflate the balloon by opening the tap.

Attic insulation

Attic insulation is generally the most cost effective of any energy efficiency upgrade.

How to install

Attic insulation can be placed in between ceiling joist, across ceiling Joists (bridging), and between or over rafters. A minimum depth of 270mm is advised for optimum heat retention. Our ‘How to insulate your home’ DVD and leaflet provides more information about attic insulation.

Attic Insulation

Insulate your cylinder tank

One of the simplest ways to save energy in your home is to insulate your hot water cylinder. Fitting a lagging jacket on your cylinder will cut heat loss by up to 75% keeping your water hotter for longer. What’s more, it will pay for itself in 2 - 3 months.

How to install

Use the eyelets and supplied cord to tighten the cylinder jacket making sure that the pipe work passes through the gaps. Do not over tighten the jacket as it insulates better when it is not over compressed.

Reflective radiator foil

Heat often escapes into the walls behind your radiators. Our radiator reflective foil reflects up to 90% of radiated heat back into your room. This foil is easy to install and there is no need to remove your radiators.

How to install

Cut the foil so that it fits behind the radiators allowing clearance for the brackets. Slide the foil behind the radiator with the silver side facing the radiator. Use the double sided tape provided to stick the foil to the wall. The foil can be easily removed for redecorating etc.

Thermostatic radiator valves

Fitting thermostatic valves to your radiators will allow you to separately adjust the temperature of your radiators in each room. For example, in general your hall doesn’t need to be as warm as the other rooms in the house so you could set the hall radiator to a lower temperature.

How to install

TRVs can be installed by a competent DIY’er, however if you are not experienced in installing this type of equipment we recommend that you use a professional installer.

Energy saving light bulbs

Replacing one 60W incandescent light bulb with an energy efficient one can save you around €25 a year. Change over to energy efficient lighting now and the savings will more than pay for the replacement cost.

How to install

Start in those areas where lighting is used for the longest periods e.g. hall, landing, kitchen and living room. Change old inefficient incandescent lightbulbs to new CFLs. Replace energy guzzling halogen lights with super economical LEDs. Look for the new technologies – dimmable and sensor energy saving efficient bulbs are now available

Light Bulbs

Electricity monitor

An electricity monitor tracks your home’s electricity usage and provides real time information on your energy consumption and what that means in Euro. When lights and appliances are turned on electricity monitors reveal exactly how much electricity is being used and how the cost of electricity per hour changes.

How to install

Use the mounting bracket to fix the sender box adjacent to the fuse box. Plug the sensor cable into the sender box and clip the sensor clip onto the main supply cable. The sender box will wirelessly transmit the information to the remote monitor. If you wish you can fix the remote monitor to the wall.

Aerated shower head

Aerated shower heads use up to 75% less hot water than a conventional shower head without compromising performance. They mix water with air which means that you will enjoy the same invigorating shower performance (and get just as clean) as you would with a conventional shower.

How to install

Check that you have the right kind of shower. You’ll need a mixer shower, or power shower, not an electric shower. Check that you have the right water pressure. You’ll need 0.5 bar pressure to gain the full benefit from this showerhead. If you have a booster pump then you should have over 0.5 bar pressure. Simply unscrew your old showerhead and screw on your new aerated showerhead


Source of statistics SEAI