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A third of Brits ignore money saving advice and make no attempt to reduce their monthly bills

Boiling a full kettle, leaving appliances on stand-by and having the heating on all year round are among the most common ways Brits are wasting money.

In research commissioned by npower, it has been revealed that around one third of the nation ignore money saving advice and make no attempt to reduce their monthly bills.

The study of 2,000 bill-payers also found one fifth think appliances don’t use electricity in standby mode, and more than 80 per cent think power showers use less water than baths. Additionally, three quarters of those surveyed consider themselves to be conscious of their energy consumption, but 37 per cent of bill-payers admit to leaving appliances on standby.

Ed Madden, head of marketing at npower which commissioned the research, said: “With energy, as with many other things in life, little things can have a big impact. A small change to your home habits may not make a massive difference alone but a few changes over a long time could not only help with your bills, but have a positive influence on the environment too.”

Flicking the kettle on with more water than is required was one of the biggest areas where people are guilty (28 per cent), whilst 27 per cent have left lights on in empty rooms and more than a fifth are guilty of falling asleep in front of the TV. When asked to identify the biggest energy wasters in the home, a third of those polled blamed their partner, while one fifth of parents pointed the finger at their children.

npower has teamed up with Karyn Fleeting, founder of popular money-saving blog, Miss Thrifty, to uncover ways to save cash in the home.

Karyn said: “What this confirms is the UK's appetite for energy-saving advice and money-saving tips. For the last 10 years, I have been on a mission to help the nation save money and spend smartly.

“One thing I have discovered is that even the smallest of modifications to household habits can make a significant dent in household bills. One minute less in the shower every day can save you up to £80 per year. A washing-up bowl can save you up to £25 a year. It's easy money.”

The 10 most common energy myths

1. Four in five (81 per cent) think showers use less water than baths, yet a power shower could be using up to 50 litres more having a bath. A water-efficient shower head could save a household up to £195 a year. *

2. Almost half (46 per cent) of bill-payers think having the heating on low all the time is more cost-efficient, but having a room thermostat to adjust the temperature can save you up to £150 per year. *

3. Just over half of Brits believe smart meters use electricity and will add to their bill. But by accurately monitoring your energy, you can save up to £21 per year. **

4. Despite research revealing savings of up to £35 per year, two fifths (43 per cent) believe energy saving lightbulbs will have little to no impact on their bill. *

5. One in five (20 per cent) Brits believe setting the heating to a slightly warmer temperature won’t make a difference to their bill, yet reducing the temperature by just one degree could save you up to £75 per year by. *

6. A myth which could be costing up to £36 a year*, almost a fifth (19 per cent) believe boiling more water than necessary doesn’t use more energy.

7. Over 40 per cent of Brits think charging a laptop uses the same amount of energy as a desktop PC, but ditching your desktop could save up to £17 a year.*

8. Almost one in five (19 per cent) Brits don’t think appliances use electricity when in standby mode. But by not switching them off completely, it could be costing you up to £30 a year.*

9. A fifth of participants don’t think a long shower adds a significant amount more to their water bill, however spending just one minute less in the shower could save you up to £80.*

10. Almost one in five think a running tap uses less water than a bowl when washing up, but by investing in a washing up bowl, you could save up to £25 on your water bill.*


*According to research and calculations by Energy Saving Trust
**According to research and calculations by Smart Energy GB