Energy price hike: Is it cheaper to keep heating on all day or use timer – experts debate

Martin Lewis explains how to reduce your energy bills

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The price cap on energy was raised from October, meaning customers on the standard tariff can expect gas and electricity bills to increase by £139 per year. This means the tariff for a typical user will increase from £1,138 to £1,277. Regulator Ofgem said the rising cost of wholesale energy was behind the hike. So, what can families do to save money on their bills?

As the weather turns colder, many households will want to be switching the heating on more often.

But with a significant rise in energy bills, some will struggle to afford to do so.

Experts have opened a debate on how families can be smarter in the way they heat their homes and, consequently, save money on their bills.

One question being raised is whether it is cheaper to keep the heating on low all day or use a timer?

Some experts have argued that the level of insulation in the home determines how much energy is needed to heat it up.

Sarah Broomfield, energy expert ay, said if your home experiences greater heat loss, you’ll spend more money maintaining the inside temperature.

Therefore, the best thing to do would be to turn the heating on only when you need it, instead of keeping it on a low temperature all day.

Sarah explained: “For those living in properties that aren’t as well insulated, the cost of leaving your heating on all the time will be especially expensive.

“Typically, the most energy-efficient approach to heating your home is to programme your heating system so that it comes on at times when you need it most.”

Sarah recommended setting up a timer for when you need the heating on during the week, and a separate timer for when you need it during the weekend.

Typically, households use their heating more often on weekends, but with working from home becoming a more viable option, more and more Britons are having to switch on their heating more regularly during the week too.

Sarah continued: “With many of the more modern room thermostats you also have the ability to set different temperatures at different times – and even set up a separate timer for weekends.”

The Energy Saving Trust has also offered its advice to consumers, saying it’s better to heat your home only when you need it.

The Trust stated on its website: “Heating controls help you keep your home comfortably warm, without over-heating and wasting energy.

“By installing and using your heating controls effectively, you could save money on your heating bills and lower your carbon emissions.”

However, some specialists have advised doing the exact opposite when it comes to heating your home.

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Some experts have said that keeping your heating on all day is the best option as condensation collects within the walls whenever the heating is off.

But it ultimately depends on the type of building you live in and how well insulated it is.

There are many ways to improve the insulation of your home, such as using specialist draught excluders to stop cold air coming in through gaps around windows, doors, and chimneys.

These draught excluders are a cheap option as 10 metres of self-adhesive seal costs only £2.89 on Amazon.

A draught excluder for your door is also available to buy – for only £1.79 from Screwfix.

Another way to save money when heating your home includes turning your thermostat down to just one degree.

This can cut your annual heating bill by £70.

Additionally, you can buy a new boiler or install cavity wall insulation.

However, these are more expensive solutions and can cost more than £2,000.

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