The more energy you use at home, the more you could be overpaying if you’re on a pricey gas and electricity deal. We found a £700 difference between the best and worst dual-fuel deals for a high-use energy customer. That’s a big enough saving to buy the latest Apple iPhone Plus.
You’re more likely to be a high-use customer if you live in a big house, have a big family, spend a lot of time at home, have poor insulation, live in a colder part of the country, or own lots of power-hungry appliances.
A high-use energy customer gets through 18,000kWh of gas and 4,600kWh of electricity per year, according to energy regulator Ofgem. But if you live in a well-insulated small flat, spend long hours out at work and have energy-efficient habits, then you’re likely to be a lower-use energy customer. This means you could be using half the amount of gas and electricity per year, according to Ofgem.
The best deals will differ, depending on how much energy you use. So when you’re using an energy switching site, it’s important to put in your actual gas and electricity usage figures to make sure you get the most accurate quote for your circumstances.
Whether you use a lot or a little energy, use our independent energy comparison site, Which? Switch, to find your cheapest energy deal.
Cheap gas and electricity for ‘high’ energy users
The cheapest dual-fuel deal for a high energy user costs £1,220 per year at the moment; saving £720 compared with the priciest deal on the market. What would you spend an extra £700 on?
Even if you’d rather stick with one of the biggest energy companies, you can still save on your bills. The cheapest dual-fuel deal on the market for a high energy user is £462 less than the priciest Big Six standard tariff (Npower’s).
But our research found that if you switch to one of the cheapest deals for a medium or low energy user, you could miss out on saving an extra £25 per year.
Save money on energy now
Even though the days are getting warmer and you’ve probably switched off your heating, there are still ways to slim down your electricity and gas bills each year.
How you can save more than £117 each year:
- £30 – don’t leave your appliances on, or on standby, when you’re not using them.
- £7 – for each light bulb you replace with an energy-saving equivalent.
- £70+ – replace old inefficient appliances, such as washing machines and tumble dryers, with energy-efficient models when you come to replace them.
- £10 – opt for paperless billing, rather than receiving your energy bills through the post, as some suppliers charge extra for paper bills.
If you pay by direct debit, take a look at your latest energy bill to check you’re paying the right amount. Your direct debit is the same throughout the year. This means you effectively pay for more than you use in summer, and underpay in winter.
It should balance out over the course of a year. So if you have a lot of credit at the start of summer, it’s worth contacting your energy supplier to ask how your direct debit is calculated. Ask for a refund if you’re a large amount in credit.
(Pricing data supplied by Energylinx and correct at 7 May 2017. Based on Ofgem average use values, paying by monthly direct debit with paperless billing. Only UK-wide available deals are included, and prices are averaged across the UK.)