5 energy-saving devices that can save you money

Learn more about how energy-saving devices and products can save you money on your gas and electricity bills.

Maeve McLaughlin
by Maeve McLaughlin on 4th October, 2016

There’s no doubt that there’s a bit of a chill in the air, and the evenings are certainly getting shorter.

Normally, what comes hand-in-hand with this time of year is an increase in gas and electricity bills, as we’re all using the heating more, and lights are on for longer in the evening. Not to mention that we’re spending more time in front of the TV!

Lately, there’s been an increase in the number of energy-saving products on the market. While these require an initial outlay of cash, it is likely that they’ll save you money over their lifetime. We’ve gathered information on five of these products, so if you’re interested in reducing your energy bills, read on…

1. Energy efficient lightbulbs

One of the easiest things you can do to save energy in your home is to replace your standard bulbs with energy efficient ones.

Compact fluorescent light (CFL) bulbs have the potential to use up to 75% less energy than more traditional bulbs, while LED bulbs could represent an energy saving of around 80%, which will reduce bills and cut CO2 consumption at the same time.

The savings you make on this are dependent on the number of energy-saving light bulbs that are used in the home. For example, it’s possible to save over €20 per bulb annually if 105 watt bulbs are replaced with 21 watt CFLs.

Given that these bulbs will last for a considerable period of time, it means savings across the lifetime of each bulb can quickly add up.

2. Energy monitors

An energy monitor is a small display, which shows you just how much energy you are currently using.

They can cost anywhere from €40 up to over €100, which is a big outlay. However, these devices can instantly help you to recognise how you’re using your energy, and where you can cut back, which will save you money in the long-term.

These monitors are small enough to sit on any countertop or windowsill so you can easily see it and use it to your advantage.

3. Smart Thermostats

The latest and greatest in the world of energy saving devices are smart thermostats like the Climote, Hive, and Nest.

These smart thermostats allow you to control your home heating and water boiler really easily from within the home, and remotely, via an app.

The argument for smart thermostats is that they help you to actively manage the temperature in your home. Some of them also ‘learn’ the household’s habits and will adapt the temperature, and when the heating comes on and off, based on the information they pick up over a week or two of usage.

Although these devices are relatively new, feedback seems to be that, despite the initial cost outlay (they cost around €150-€200), they can definitely save you money over time by helping you to be smarter about your energy usage

4. Timed plugs

Timed plugs could be a really simple way to reduce your energy usage. They cost around €5 each, and basically how they work is that you can set the time that your plugs switch on.

We all know that leaving devices on stand-by wastes energy. A practical use for timed plugs would be to use them for your TV and set-top box - setting the timer to turn off the plugs at night and during the day when people are not home, rather than leaving them on standby. But, remember that if you have anything set up to record on your set-top box, you will need to leave the plug for this turned on.

You could also use timed plugs if you charge your phone while you’re asleep at night. Generally phones take about 4 hours to charge, so you could set the plug to come on from, say, 2am-6am, instead of leaving the charger plugged in all night - saving you energy and money in the process.

5. Automatic radiator bleeders

Maintaining your radiator is key to its efficiency, and you should bleed your radiators each year. An automatic radiator bleeder takes the hassle out of this, and will remove all of the built-up air in the system.

These cost between €15 to €25, and not only will this simple gadget increase the efficiency of your heating, but also help to keep your radiators working for longer.

The biggest savings you can make

In addition to ensuring your home is energy efficient, switching provider is the biggest way to make savings on your energy bills.

Currently, the average dual fuel customer can save up to €358 by switching from standard tariffs to the cheapest deals on the market.

Want to save €358? Compare gas and electricity prices now