British Gas is launching a service that allows customers to control their central heating remotely, potentially saving around £100 a year.
The new service, which is exclusive to British Gas customers and costs from £149 to install, will enable users to adjust their thermostat away from the home by using the web, a smartphone application or a text message.
Although you could significantly reduce energy waste with systems such as this, considering the price tag, you could get much of the benefit simply by making an effort to adjust your heating controls more often.
Visit our full advice guide on boilers to find out how to best use your heating, and see our 10 tips on how to save on your energy bills.
Using your heating controls
There are four central heating controls you can use:
- Timer – turns your boiler on or off at set times.
- Room thermostat – measures how warm your room is and adjusts the boiler operation accordingly. Wireless thermostats are now available, which makes the location of your thermostat more flexible.
- Programmer – a more sophisticated version of a timer, letting you set different heating patterns for different days of the week and sometimes alter the pattern, eg for a party or holiday.
- Thermostatic radiator valves – these allow you to easily adjust the temperature of individual radiators and turn radiators off or on according to whether or not you’re using a room.
Room thermostats are useful for setting a certain temperature in each room. You can reduce wasted energy by setting lower levels in rooms you don’t use frequently.
Thermostat programmers cost anything between £20 and £100, but can save you the hassle of having to turn your heating on and off. Setting it to turn you heating off at predetermined times, such as when you are at work or on holiday, will cut your energy usage and bills.