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Energy advice made simple

Our pledge

In 2016, DEFA pledged to deliver on a number of measures to help contribute towards targets put forward within Tynwald's Climate Change Mitigation Strategy.

Help us reach our goal

We can't achieve these targets alone, we need your help. This website was created to help residents reduce their fuel bills whilst also reducing their use of fossil fuels.

Explore this website to find out how you can help us achieve these goals and create a better environment.

Save Energy

Understand your bill

The information on a typical energy bill can be confusing. But understanding it can go a long way to helping you get to grips with your energy use.

This youtube clip from Energy Saving Trust - Home Energy Scotland is very helpful.

Heating advice


Thermostats are systems used to regulate your home's temperature by controlling the warmth emitted by radiators.

Lower the temperature on your thermostat 

Thermostats can be programmed to lower or switch off your heating whilst you’re asleep or away from your home. 

If your home doesn’t have one, we highly recommend installing one as it could save you over £100 a year! 

Positioning your thermostat 

It is suggested that the thermostats should be placed on the interior wall, away from direct sunlight, drafts and windows. 

Your thermostat should also be located in a place where there are natural air currents (i.e. where warm air rises and cold air sinks). Avoid placing your thermostat behind, or blocked off by furniture. 

Be time savvy

Limit the number of hours you keep the central heating on.

Top Tips!
Keep your heating on a low setting when you go away during the winter months. This will not only prevent your pipes from freezing up, it'll also save you a hefty repair bill!



Help your future self out by buying a more energy efficient boiler. It can be fairly expensive to buy a new boiler, however, you'll certainly save money in the long term as It should be a lot more efficent!

Wrap up your boiler's pipes

If your pipe exteriors aren't insulated, then they will lose a lot of heat. A solution to this is to fit foam insulation around the pipes.



Turn down the temperature of the radiators in rooms you don't use as often. Alternatively, you should consider turning off radiators in rooms which you rarely use.

Try not to let curtains hang in front of radiators or placing a sofa in front of them. Objects in front of radiators soak up most of the heat, meaning that heat energy is left wasted in that room.

Water advice

Domestic water usage

The biggest use of hot water in the house is usually baths, showers, dishwashers and washing machines.

Water usage facts

  • running a bath will typically use up to 88 litres of water to fill. If you were to have two baths a week, it would cost you £37 a year.
  • running a shower will typically only use 56 litres for 8 mins and 24 litres for 4 minutes
  • If you were to have 8-minute showers every day, it would cost you £80.11 per year. If you were to have a 4-minute shower every day, it would cost you £40.06 per year.

Shower Heads 

Save money by replacing leaky faucets with new, energy efficient shower heads. New high-efficiency showerheads use less water than standard models without sacrificing performance, helping you conserve water and save on energy. With a low flow shower head, you can reduce this to 4 or 5 litres/minute.

Top Tip!
Have shorter showers. If everyone in your household shaved just a mere 60 seconds off of their shower times, you could save over £20 a year!

Washing Machines

The quantity of litres used in a wash load varies depending on the model. As a general rule of thumb, modern washing machines out there use around 57-95 litres of water per wash. 

Energy Efficiency Labels

If you’ve gone shopping for electrical appliances recently, chances are you’ll have spotted one of these. EU energy efficiency labels are found on a selection of white goods, including:

  • Washing machines
  • Tumble dryers
  • Fridge-freezers
  • Dishwashers
  • Electric ovens
  • Energy-saving light bulbs 

The label is there to give you information about how energy efficient a product is. Product ratings go from D up to A+++, with A+++ beingthe most energy efficient. The label also includes the annual energy consumption for each product, as well as product-specific information, such as noise levels or water consumption.

eu energy label

Don’t overfill the kettle 

Heating water is an expensive process and uses a fair bit of energy. Solution? Only fill the kettle up with the amount of water you intend on using. If you boil 1 pint more than you need, 4 times a day, it could cost you around £10 extra a year in energy costs.

Did you know...

The average person used 150 litres of water every day! Let's look at the breakdown

Water usage breakdown

Click the image above to see the whole infographic on water usage.


Domestic Lighting 

LED advantagesSwitch to LED Lights

LED lights come in a variety of shapes, sizes and fittings and use ten times as less energy than most other bulbs, whilst also last much longer. By switching out old bulbs into new LED bulbs, you could save £35 pounds a year!

Click the image to see the whole infographic on LED bulbs vs regular bulbs.

LED Lifespan

Most LED bulbs have a lifespan of 25,000 hours. How long could 25,000 hours of light last you? If you were to keep on the light for 5 hours a day, it would take you roughly just under 14 years to use one LED Bulb.

LED cost chartCost Breakdown

It costs £1.34 per month to run an incandescent bulb. After one year, this would cost  £16.2. In 14 years, it would cost around £189.5 on running the bulb, which also includes the additional £21 on replacement bulbs during these years. 

By switching to an LED bulb, you could save £147 on one light bulb over a 14-year period.



Did you know that 25% of heat is lost through the roof of an uninsulated home. By insulating your loft, you could save over £200!

Whilst you're at it, why not insulate your hot water tank too! By simply adding a cheap and specialised hot water tank jacket, you can save over £50 a year. Kaching!

The recommended depth of blanket style insulation (glass or mineral wool) for a loft is 270 mm. If you already have insulation, but it was put in some time ago, it is worth checking the depth, as only a few years ago the recommended depth of insulation was 200mm, and before that it was as little as 100mm.

Insulating your loft, attic or flat roof is a simple and effective way to reduce heat loss and reduce your heating bills. Loft insulation is effective for at least 40 years and it should pay for itself many times over.

If your loft is easy to access and has no damp or condensation problems it should be easy to insulate. It is possible to do it yourself.

If access is easy and your loft joists are regular, you can use rolls of mineral wool insulation. The first layer is laid between the joists – the horizontal beams that make up the floor of the loft – then another layer is laid at right angles to cover the joists and make the insulation up to the required depth. This can be done by someone competent in DIY or a professional installer.

Make sure you don't squash the mineral wool when you fit the boards on top as this this will reduce its insulation value.  In all cases adequate ventilation should be maintained to the rafters.


The Smaller Savers

WindowTraditional Blinds

Traditional blinds are blinds with vertical or horizontal slats. These window coverings can be quite useful at lowering heat gain during the summer. However, if you’re looking to make major saves on your home’s heat loss, then you should look elsewhere.
Why? Blinds like this have multiple openings between each horizontal or vertical slat. These openings result in hot air escaping through the window, meaning the blind does little to reduce heat loss.
However, in warmer temperatures, this blind can prove to be pretty helpful. These blinds are often highly reflective, meaning they reflect the light and reduce heat gain.  


Hanging curtains are not the greatest, or most energy efficient window cover. However, if you’re savvy enough, you can optimise this treatment’s effectiveness. A curtians ability to reduce or gain heat is dependent on several factors, such as the material it is made from and its colour. Below are some top tips to optimise your home's curtains. 

Reducing heat loss

Tight fit!

Try fit your drapes as close to the windows as possible. You should consider purchasing Velcro-stick tapes, which will stick the materials onto a nearby surface.

Reduce heat gain

It’s a bit dark in here..

During hot and sunny days, consider closing your drapes or curtains. By limiting the amount of direct sunlight, you can lower the heat gain within your homes.

Curtain Colour

If your window is prone to a lot of direct sunlight, consider buying medium to light coloured drapes. This will help reflect the light, reducing heat gain from your home. This method can reduce heat gains by 33%.

Window Films

Sadly, this doesn't involve watching movies. But, unlike Hollywood films, this type of treatment to reduce heat gain and even protects against ultraviolet exposure.

Window films can come is a variety of colours, sizes and artistic patterns. They're perfect for those who don't want to block views with other types of window instalments. Unlike most other window treatments, they can usually fit any size, and type of window.


An awning is an overhanging materialled shelter which is attached to an exterior wall to deflect sun and rain. This type of instalment is only effective at reducing a home's heat gain. They're very effective and reduce a home's heat gain by over 50%.

Solar Window Screen

As the name suggests, this window covering reduces solar heat gain and UV damage. Unlike other window treatments, they do not vastly restrict the window's visibility. So, a big advantage to this treatment is that it reduces solar heat gain, whilst maintaining visibility and light.

Small energy saving tips

Follow these top tips to help reduce your energy usage in your home. Every little helps – over time, all of these little energy saving hacks will add up! 

Energy saving tipsDon’t Overfill the Kettle

Heating water is an expensive process and uses a fair bit of energy. Solution? Only fill the kettle up with the amount of water you intend on using. If you boil 1 pint more than you need, 4 times a day, it could cost you around £10 extra a year in energy costs. 

Hang back those curtains

Try not to let curtains hang in front of radiators or placing a sofa in front of them. They soak up most of the heat, meaning the rest of the room a less heat within it. 

Switch standby off

Try not to leave appliances on standby unnecessarily. Almost all electrical and electronic appliances can be turned off at the plug without upsetting their programming. You may want to think about getting a standby saver which allows you to turn all your appliances off standby in one go. 

Try to avoid using your tumble dryer

If it’s a nice day out there, consider hanging your clothes out to dry outside. It’s a free energy saving hack and it’ll leave your clothes smelling nice and fresh. 

Wash Up less often

How long do you have to wait before the kitchen tap runs hot? This is water that has been sitting in the pipes. Try to wash up once a day instead of every time you use a plate. If you avoid waiting for the tap to run hot three times a day, you could save £10/year. 

Fill em' Up!

Make sure to only run the dishwasher/washing machine unless it’s full. Avoid using these machines if you only have a few items in there. Dishwashers consume lots of energy yet can be so easily avoided! 

Lights out!

Turn your lights off when you're not using them. If you switch a light off for just a few seconds, you will save more energy than it takes for the light to start up again, regardless of the type of light. This will save you over £10 on your annual energy bills.

More information

Contact us                                        

Phone: 0808 1624 276
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on Energy Efficiency.
Alternatively, search to find out more information on DEFA's latest energy efficiency schemes.
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