Energy Saving Tips & Actions
Home Energy Advice
The Centre for Sustainable Energy (CSE)
is an independent national charity that shares knowledge and experience to help people change the way they think and act on energy with projects that find solutions to the threat of climate change and the misery of cold homes. Click here to see more
Free Phone Advice number for Somerset Residents
0800 038 5730 email firstname.lastname@example.org
Electricity Cost Calculator
calculate the running cost of any electrical items using a range of electricity tariffs. This can help you identify areas in your homes that aren't so efficient, and the cost saved through. Click here to see more.
Help with fuel bills
Fuel Bank Foundation provides emergency financial support through their network of partners. They identify people who cannot afford to pre-pay for their fuel or energy. Often they will have used up all their options for support. This means that when their money runs out, they have no heating or means to cook hot food. We call this “fuel crisis”.
Affordable Warmth Solutions are here to help address the issues caused by increasing energy prices and the growth of Fuel Poverty in the UK.
We are here to;
Help reduce fuel bills
Make fuel poor households warmer
Improve the health of people suffering from fuel poverty
Many combi boilers are burning more gas, generating more carbon emissions and costing households more than they need to. People could be saving energy and money simply by ensuring their boiler is running as efficiently as possible. But many people aren’t aware they can change their boiler settings.
The average household could currently save around £112 per year on their heating bill by lowering their boiler flow temperature. Heating homes with fossil fuels accounts for 15% of the UK’s carbon emissions. So by using energy more efficiently, we can cut carbon emissions and save money on our heating bills at the same time.
Find out more and take the challenge here
District Network Operators - connection viability checks
for Heat pumps & EV charging
South Somerset has two District Network Operators who manage the connections to the grid
and the power lines to homes and businesses. They are Scottish and Southern Energy
Network (SSEN) and Western Power Distribution (WPD).
To find out which DNO your home or business is in, visit Energy Networks
Scottish and Southern Energy Network (SSEN) has launched the Online Application Portal for EV and Heat Pump Connections, an innovative new tool to help customers connect low carbon technologies to the grid. The tool provides automatic quotes for households and businesses and can support bulk applications, saving installers time and money. The journey to net zero is underway and as increasing numbers of customers switch to low carbon technologies (LCT) such as electric vehicles (EVs) and heat pumps, SSEN is working to facilitate the growth in connections and answer customer demand.
The new portal represents the first time that a distribution network operator (DNO) has offered a spreadsheet upload option to its customers, to help streamline the application process. The tool has been rigorously tested with stakeholders throughout the development process and can now be accessed via SSEN’s Connections portal.
The other DNO is Western Power Distribution (WPD). To find out how to connect your EV charging point or Heat Pump visit their webpage
Everyone deserves a home which is warm, comfortable and affordable to heat.
Safe and Warm Somerset is here to help anyone who may need help with energy bills or keeping warm at home.
Supporting residents in Somerset with reducing energy bills and keeping warm at home.
Find out more and how to apply here
What and Why Retrofit?
Retrofit are actions to improve the home's energy efficiency and comfort levels through insulation, ventilation and fossil fuel free energy generation. Youtube recordings of Retrofit Basics by CSE can be viewed here
is a partnership between the four District Councils in Somerset plus the Town Councils of Frome, Bruton and Glastonbury, Somerset Independence Plus and the Centre for Sustainable Energy.
Funded by the UK Government through the UK Community Renewal Fund, this 6 month project offered a limited number of discounted Retrofit Assessments to home owners wanting to share their retrofit journey with others.
Discounted offers now finished but to find out about and book a home Retrofit Assessments visit: www.futureproof.uk.net/our-services
Other elements of this project included:
30 free training places for Somerset contractors on skilling up in retrofit with the Green Register - further info visit https://www.greenregister.org.uk /crf-retrofit-training
Open Homes Events Have you made energy efficiency improvements to your home and would like to share your story? The project showcased homeowners in Somerset who have made changes to their home, to share their knowledge and experiences with others through a series of online open homes events. If you think this is something you might like to do or would like more information please fill out this form.
The first Somerset Green Open Homes webinars showcasing four South Somerset homeowners retrofit projects can be watched again. Episode 1: Two 1970s Homes and Episode 3: 1970s Bungalow and a 1820s detached house - All 4 episodes of Somerset homeowners retrofit actions can be watched here
To view all the films of the retrofit and home improvement features visit here.
For more information about the project and support for retrofit in Somerset please visit the Retrofit Somerset website
Somerset Retrofit Project - funded by MCS Foundation, this one year funded project takes the next step from Somerset Retrofit Accelerator project to engage with community groups, Somerset councils, to find areas for community retrofit, and develop and business plan to deliver retrofit actions. Being lead by Somerset Climate Action Network, Somerset Independence Plus, Centre for Sustainable Energy, Frome, Bruton and Glastonbury Town Councils and Somerset Council
Home Upgrade Grants (HUGs)
The Home Upgrade Grant Scheme (HUGs) is available across Somerset following a bid to the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) by Somerset Independence Plus, which is a partnership between Sedgemoor District Council, Mendip District Council, Somerset County Council, Somerset West & Taunton Council and South Somerset District Council.
From April 2022, owner occupied properties not connected to the gas grid with an EPC D or below & with a gross income below £30k will be able to apply for energy efficiency home improvement grants to help make homes warmer and more comfortable while reducing energy bills and carbon emissions.
Grants will pay for energy efficiency measures such as solid wall insulation, cavity wall insulation, loft insulation, underfloor insulation, high heat retention electric storage heaters, solar panels, air source heat pumps, heating controls or double glazing (to replace single glazing). However, to make sure your home gets what it needs, we’ll carry out a free energy survey and let you know how we can help.
To be eligible you’ll need to:
Own and live in your property that is off-mains gas for heating; and
Have a combined gross household income of less than £30,000 a year OR someone in your home receives a means-tested benefit; and
Have an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating of D, E, F, or G. If you don’t have an EPC then the Centre for Sustainable Energy will arrange this for you.
To apply, call the Centre for Sustainable Energy on 0800 038 5730 (10am to 4PM, Tuesday to Thursday) or email email@example.com
This is an exciting opportunity to install improvements in your home which could help reduce fuel bills and carbon emissions.
This offer is limited and on a first-come, first-served basis so find out more and apply today so we can get your application started. But please not - this scheme is now fully subscribed so applications are currently being paused to minimise disappointment.
To check which contractors are covering your area, see the MCS website
Boiler Upgrade Scheme (BUS)
The Scheme will launch in April 2022 to aid the decarbonisation of homes. It will provide upfront capital grants to support the installation of heat pumps, and in some circumstances biomass boilers, to replace gas, oil and coal fired boilers in homes. Around 14% of the UK’s carbon emissions comes from heating our homes, the Committee on Climate Change (CCC) says, and the Boiler Upgrade Scheme will be a key driver to help the UK reach its net zero target, by ensuring all new heating system installations will be low carbon by 2035. Heat pumps are an environmentally-friendly alternative to gas boilers for heating our homes. They extract heat from the environment, even at low outside temperatures, and can produce around three times the energy they use, making them much more efficient than a gas boiler. And unlike gas boilers, heat pumps do not generate carbon when operating.
Applications will begin from 1 April by registering with a heat pump installers via Ofgem, who will then apply for the grant on the homeowners behalf. Redeeming of the voucher will be led by the installer, who will confirm proof of the installation and process the completed paperwork.
The following types of heat pumps will be supported:
Ground source heat pumps
Water source heat pumps
Air source heat pumps
Biomass boilers will be supported,
But only in rural areas with populations of 10,000 people or less.
They won’t be offered to people in urban areas.
Your home must also meet high emissions standards to have a biomass boiler installed,
which the government says is “to mitigate any negative impact on air quality.”
Homeowners will need a valid Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) no more than ten years old to apply to the Boiler Upgrade Scheme and must have completed any recommended insulation improvements.
The validity period will be three months for air source heat pumps and biomass boiler vouchers, and six months for ground source heat pump vouchers.
Most homeowners, small landlords and private landlords will be eligible to apply for grant. Click here to find out if you are eligible.
1 April 2022 - Low carbon heating systems that are commissioned on or after this date will be entitled to support under the scheme
11 April 2022 - Installers will be able to open an account with Ofgem see BUS installer guidance on how to an account
23 May 2022 - BUS opens for grant applications via your installer.
For full details about the scheme and all you need to know, please visit this Energy Saving Trust webpage
Energy Company Obligation (ECO) Funding
The Energy Company Obligation (ECO) - is a requirement placed on energy companies over a certain size to help improve domestic energy performance of the homes of those vulnerable to the cold or on low incomes. In the ECO4 phase there is a new additional facility called Flexible Eligibility. This is where the Councils* can set criteria to direct assistance towards local private sector homes at risk of fuel poverty, but falling outside of the normal rules of ECO.
The eligibility criteria has been designed to support fuel poor activity in Somerset and provide another route for us to help deliver energy improvements to our residents. The ECO4 funding has recently been launched.
*See JOINT ECO Flexible Eligibility Statement of Intent here.
All potentially eligible households will need to apply through the Home Energy Team at the Centre for Sustainable Energy in order to be assessed. Telephone 0800 082 2234 or visit their website here.
Lendology - Energy Efficiency Loans
SSDC are partnered with Lendology, an FCA regulated financial services company based in Taunton, Somerset, to offer energy efficiency and renewable energy loans to local residents.
From improving energy efficiency, installing renewable energy technologies, household retrofit projects and supporting landlords to meet Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards, Lendology are able to provide a loan that can meet your requirements.
Making your home energy efficient will not only reduce your bills and save you money, but it is also good for the planet. An energy efficient home can lower your carbon footprint, reduce heat loss and potentially increase the value of your home. Renewable energy is one part of the solution but making smaller energy improvements to your home can also create a big difference.
For more details, click here.