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How to improve your Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating
The cost of running our homes is higher than ever so it’s understandable that the EPC rating of a property is becoming increasingly important to us when choosing somewhere to live.
If your EPC rating is putting off potential buyers or tenants, below are some great ways to improve your score.
What is an Energy Performance Certificate?
An EPC is a standardised document which ranks properties according to how energy efficient they are. This is something that sellers have to provide to potential buyers and landlords have to offer prospective tenants.
Properties are ranked from A to G with A being the most energy efficient. It’s particularly important for landlords to note that as of April 2018, properties with an F or G rating will no longer be allowed to be let to tenants.
You can find out more information about Energy Performance Certificate’s and how to obtain one by visiting: https://www.energysavingtrust.org.uk/home-energy-efficiency/energy-performance-certificates
How to improve your EPC rating
Change your light bulbs
The simplest way to make your home more energy efficient is to use energy saving light bulbs. Replace halogen or non-low energy lighting (LEL) with low-energy lighting (LEL), compact fluorescent lights (CFL) or light-emitting diodes (LEDs).
Replacing even just one light bulb with an energy saving one can reduce lighting costs by up to £50 over the lifetime of the bulb.
Invest in renewable technologies
From solar panels to bio-mass boilers and ground source heat pumps, an initial investment in renewable technologies can save a lot of money in the long-run. For example, ground source heat pumps are up to 20 times more efficient than conventional central heating systems.
What’s more, all renewable technologies are currently incentivised via government backed and guaranteed feed-in-tariffs (FITs). This means that they will continue to provide domestic hot water and central heating at significantly reduced rates in comparison to other systems.
Install window shutters
Window shutters can help to improve the EPC rating of your home because they’re fantastic heat insulators. This means that even if your windows aren’t great, the shutters can still help to keep out the cold air so you don’t need to have your heating on for as long.
Ensure that your heating and hot water supplies are efficient
An incredible 62% of our total yearly spend on energy is for heating and hot water. As well as having a big impact on your bills, this will also play a big part in your energy performance rating.
If you have central heating:
- Replace older boilers with a newer and more efficient one.
- Insulate and draught-proof your house so that warm air doesn’t escape.
- Use chemical inhibitors to help maintain your system more efficiently.
- Install controls to ensure your boiler is only providing heat when and where you need it.
If you have electric heating:
- Consider fitting new, more efficient heaters if yours are old.
- Install thermostats and controls to make heaters more efficient.
To reduce your hot water consumption:
- Take short showers instead of having a bath.
- Lower the temperature on your water heater. Reducing it by 12°C can save you anything from 3-5% on your water heating costs.
- Whether you’re brushing your teeth or washing the dishes, don’t let the water run.
- Leaking taps can be a huge drain on energy and your bank account. If you have a tap which is leaking, time one minute and count how many drips there are. You can then use this drip calculator (https://www.drinktap.org/water-info/water-conservation/drip-calculator.aspx) to find out how much this is costing you in water per day – you will probably be surprised. 60 drips per minute equates to an unbelievable 8.64 gallons of water per day and over 3,000 gallons a year.