Fit a programmable thermostat and save 10-20% on heating bills

We’ve just switched our heating on and I’m very aware of the amount of energy we’re using this year. Prices keep going up but they very rarely go back down. It’s getting more and more expensive to keep warm, but there’s a clever little gadget that might be just the thing. I’ve been investigating programmable thermostats, and this is what I’ve found out.

  • a programmable thermostat is a clock and thermostat rolled in one. The Energy Saving Trust recognises them as a useful energy saving product
  • they’re available from most thermostat manufacturers
  • you can upgrade your old-style standard manual dial thermostat and time clock with the help of a good plumber and heating engineer
  • it’s easier to control your heating via one gadget than having to set a clock and thermostat separately
  • it lets you programme in different levels of heat at different times of day instead of just switching your heating on and off
  • some of them include an optimum start function which adjusts the time the heating kicks off based on your home’s ambient temperature, for example turning it on later on mild mornings
  • do you need a mains or battery powered version? It depends on your heating system, so ask your plumber in advance
  • you can even buy wireless versions. Honeywell, for example, manufacture a wireless programmable thermostat – a great idea if it suits your system because it means no faffing around with wiring

Five sensible questions…

…to ask before you decide which is the best thermostat for your home:

  1. how many settings are there for ‘comfort levels’ and are they enough for your needs
  2. does it let you set different weekend and weekday temperatures?
  3. does it include seven day programming?
  4. can you set it to optimum start?
  5. what’s best for your system: mains powered, battery operated or wireless?

Finding a reliable plumber and heating engineer

You can’t beat word of mouth. If you don’t have any luck that way, contact someone local via Check-A-Trade. Or walk around the streets near you and see if you can spot a plumber living near you. We found ours by ringing the number on a van parked down the road. He only lives 100m up the road – so handy!

PS. check out our B&Q discount codes for all sorts of energy saving gadgets and products…