Affordable Warmth and Energy Efficiency
Making your home warmer and healthier, and reducing the energy you use
Making your home more energy efficient will save you money on your fuel bills - but will also improve your health by making your home warmer too.
We have access to some funding for heating repairs, replacement boilers and first time central heating systems. There are a number of ways you may qualify, including some welfare benefits, a combination of low income and high heating costs, or certain health conditions which are made worse by the cold.
Funding for first time central heating
if you don't have central heating in your home, and are using portable heaters, storage heaters or open fires to heat your home, you may qualify for this funding. It is aimed at households with a low income - you may qualify if you receive a means tested benefit or have a household income of less than £16,500 per year. To see if you qualify, use our online checker, or contact us to find out more. This funding is available on a first come first served basis until 28 February 2017.
Funding for replacement boilers and central heating
If your postcode begins with CW1, CW2, CW5, CW12, SK9, SK10, SK11, ST7 or WA16, you may be entitled to help with heating from Warm Zone. The funding is based on your full postcode, your health and the household income and will be assessed by Warm Zone. Please contact the Save Energy Advice Line on 0800 043 0151 to find out more. This funding is available until 31 March 2017.
If you don't live in a qualifying postcode area but you are on a means tested benefit or have a health condition made worse by the cold, our Care and Repair service can help by checking your eligibility for any other grants that are available.
Energy advice services
These services in Cheshire East can help you if you want to reduce your energy use, save money, or find a way to manage your fuel bills.
Hotspots is an affordable warmth referral network so that you can enter your details in one place and we will make sure that they get passed to the right organisation, rather than you trying to work out who is the best agency to contact. Complete our online Hotspots form if you want any information or advice about saving energy, managing your fuel bills, money advice, heating repairs, or fire safety in the home.
Save Energy Advice Line
Energy Projects Plus provide a telephone advice service on 0800 043 0151 for Cheshire East residents, offering a wide range of advice on energy efficiency, information on insulation grants and offers, switching energy suppliers, managing fuel debt, renewable energy, and much more.
The Government has placed an obligation on the largest energy companies to provide help with heating and insulation to low income and vulnerable households, as well as for people where their properties are 'hard to treat' (normally solid walls, or narrow cavity walls). There are numerous installers who have access to energy company funding for heating and insulation. You don't have to be on a low income to access help with insulation - there are many schemes available for free or discounted insulation. The Save Energy Advice Line will be able to signpost to you to companies offering funding.
We have teamed up with Ovo Energy to create 'Fairerpower', offering you gas and electricity at competitive prices. For more information, visit Fairerpower.
Care and Repair
The Council's Care and Repair service provides support to older, disabled and vulnerable people to improve their homes so they are safe and warm. The service includes accessing urgent works grants for home repairs such as heating and insulation, and helping to organise the works. For more information, please visit Care and Repair.
Here are some simple, low-cost tips about saving energy:
- Use the timer on your central heating system to set the heating to be one when you need it most. Set it to come on 1 hour before you get up in a morning, and to go off again when you go to bed. If you are usually out during the day, set the timer to go off before you go out, and come back on again just before you arrive home.
- Keep your thermostat between 18C and 21C.
- Close your curtains at dusk to stop heat escaping through the windows, and check for draughts around the windows and doors.
- Turn off the lights when you leave a room.
- Don't leave appliances on standby, and unplug chargers when not in use.
- When using the dishwasher or washing machine, use low temperatures and only wash full loads.
- Avoid using a tumble dryer - put clothes on the washing line where possible.
- Use energy saving light bulbs, available from most major supermarkets and DIY stores, among others.
- Only boil as much water in your kettle as you need (but remember to cover the elements of an electric kettle).
- When buying appliances, check the energy rating label - aim to buy appliances with as high a rating as possible.
What you can do to improve your home:
- Loft insulation could save you up to £175 per year by preventing heat escaping through your roof.
- Cavity wall insulation (filling the gap between the inner and outer walls to your home) could save you up to £135 per year, and could pay for itself in 3 years.
- Solid wall insulation. If your house was built earlier than 1920s, the chances are that you have solid walls (without a cavity that could be filled with insulation). Solid walls can be insulated either externally or internally - depending which method you choose will determine how much it will cost to do - internal insulation tends to be cheaper.
- Draught proofing. This is one of the cheapest ways to insulate your home. Draughts let in cold air around doors and windows. Remember though - only insulate draughts, not ventilation (such as air vents). You need ventilation in your home to keep it healthy and reduce condensation and damp.
- Improve your heating. Ways you can do this include fitting better controls, such as thermostatic valves on each radiator to control the temperature, or replacing your boiler with a newer, more efficient model.