Simple £8 gadget that can help you slash energy bills this winter by HUNDREDS of pounds | The Sun

A CHEAP gadget you can pick up for as little as £8 could help slash your energy bills by hundreds of pounds.

Brits are facing high energy bills again this winter and many are looking for easy ways to help cut their costs.

The energy price cap fell from £2,074 to £1,923 on October 1, the lowest figure since March 2022.

But millions of households who use less energy than average are expected to see higher bills this winter than last year.

This is because the government's £400 energy bill discount isn't being repeated.

So for those looking for extra ways to keep their costs down over the colder months, forking out £8 for a smart plug could do just the trick.



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Smart plugs help households save money by highlighting any energy-guzzling devices around the home.

The plugs report energy usage throughout the day and some can also be used to set a timer for when gadgets turn on.

They are placed between a plug socket and the plug of the device being measured.

Most can also be hooked up to devices such as Amazon's Alexa or a Google Home to use remotely.

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Savvy savers who have tested the plugs say they take "less than two minutes to set up" and have been critical in working out which of their gadgets are using the most power.

One fan with an Eightree smart plug commented on Amazon: "What really sets these smart plugs apart is the energy monitoring feature – it's simply brilliant!

"I can keep track of how much energy each device is using and adjust accordingly to save money on my energy bill."

Last year, dad-of-two Mark Thompson slashed £750 off his energy bills by turning off or selling his least energy-efficient appliances after testing them with a smart plug.

However, the exact amount you could save depends on how old your appliance is, how much power it needs and how regularly it's used.

Older appliances tend to drain more energy when not in use compared to newer ones.

According to Which?, it costs around £5.99 a year to leave a wireless speaker on Standby for 20 hours a day.

Leaving your radio on standby could cost around £1.48 a year, while forgetting to fully switch off the TV could add around 50p to your bill.

This may not sound like much, but the costs really start to add up if you leave several gadgets on standby every day.

You can pick up a smart plug on Amazon Prime for around £8-£9 with good reviews.

Any selling for less than this tend to carry hefty delivery fees, so don't get caught out.

Before buying a device, check the make is genuine and look at reviews from people who have used the device already.

If you just want to check how much energy each device uses, you don't need to buy multiple plugs – you can use one plug to check each device separately.

If you want a smart plug that lets you control appliances remotely, read the description carefully before buying to make sure it has that function.

Other ways to monitor energy usage

Smart plugs aren't the only way to keep track of your energy usage.

Getting a smart meter installed can also help track how much you're spending on gas and electricity.

These are different to smart plugs as they look at energy usage around the whole home rather than for each device.

The actual smart meter sends the readings to your supplier so you don't have to, while the in-home display screen shows you how much you're spending.

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Most energy suppliers provide smart meters and displays for free. However, some users have reported issues with their devices, for example when changing providers.

Your supplier should be able to answer any questions you have.

Do you have a money problem that needs sorting? Get in touch by emailing [email protected].

You can also join our new Sun Money Facebook group to share stories and tips and engage with the consumer team and other group members.

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