Burnley family takes part in new series with Dom Littlewood and save £45 on their energy bills in just one month

A Burnley family-of-six has made significant savings on their energy bills after taking part in a new series with presenter and consumer champion, Dom Littlewood.

Danielle Yabantu and Mwande Mabaso have four young children and, like many families, they’ve seen their bills rise since the energy price cap increased in April 2022.

With Danielle’s father now set to move in with them, they expect their bills to rise even further.

Read More

Read More
In pictures: Clarets fans delight as former Burnley FC boss Sean Dyche honours p...
Presenter Dom Littlewood with Danielle Yabantu and Mwande Mabaso

The new mini-series, What’s Watt, created by Dom Littlewood and Smart Energy GB follows Dom as he visits families across Great Britain including the Yabantus in Burnley, to help them navigate increasing energy bills and the rising cost of living.

The Yabantu family followed Dom’s practical advice to better manage their energy usage and help reduce their household bills by an average of £45* per month since his visit.

Danielle identified that most of the energy they used was on the washing machine and tumble dryer, with Dom recommending shorter and colder washes to reduce this. Due to the size of the family, constantly cooking during the week was also a concern for the couple.

Dom recommended a number of things including batch cooking, only boiling the water needed in the kettle each time and checking the efficiency of fridge seals to avoid warm air entering and causing the fridge to have to work harder to stay cool - all saving both money and time.

Dom also highlighted the importance of having a smart meter installed which sends meter readings directly to your energy supplier at least once a month and ensures you receive accurate bills. Additionally, smart meters coming with an in-home display that shows exactly how much energy is being used in near-real time and in pounds and pence, giving people more control over their energy use.

Following his visit, the family has taken the tips on board and are already seeing results. They have implemented shorter, colder washes and have taken to drying clothes on the line outside when the weather permits. They’ve also purchased draught excluders for their doors and have pulled their sofas away from their radiators to improve circulation when the time comes to put on the heating.

They estimate that this has reduced their bills by £40-50 each month and are looking to make even more changes to reduce their energy usage over the summer months, including getting a smart meter installed, closing off their living room fireplace so no heat is lost and switching to an energy-efficient shower head.

The series launches as research finds that four months on from April’s energy price cap increase, over a quarter (28%) of people in the North-West say this is the first summer they’ve taken action to reduce their energy use, after typically paying less attention to bills during the warmer months.

Despite many taking actions already, one in five (19%) people in the north west would like more advice on ways to save energy in the summer, with 30% wanting tips they haven’t heard before.

Following this demand for new tips, Dom Littlewood and Smart Energy GB have also teamed up with consumer advocates Helen Skelton and MoneyMagpie, to co-author the second chapter of the Super Smart Energy Savers Report.

The panel has been formed with combined expertise to ensure it features actionable advice to help all households manage their energy use and take control of their household budgets.

Advice from the Super Smart Energy Savers Panel

Get the most out of your fans – choosing the right fan is key to staying cool and in control of your energy bills. Making sure any fans or cooling equipment you have around the house are as energy efficient as possible will reduce your consumption of electricity. The way you use your fan is important too: for example, some have timers that enable you to save energy when you’re asleep; or placing a bowl of ice in front of your fan will lower the temperature of the air circulating in the room and cool you down quicker.Get a smart meter - smart meters ensure your bills are accurate and come with an in-home display that shows exactly how much energy is being used in near-real time and in pounds and pence, giving customers more control over their energy use. If you’re trying to reduce your energy use to keep bills down, knowing how much you are using – and what you’re spending – can be a huge help. As can knowing what the bill will be before it arrives. And they’re available at no extra cost from your energy supplier. Switch to a summer routine – maybe you use your tumble-dryer regularly during the winter but using a tumble dryer three times a week costs approximately £223 a year**, so think about drying washing outside if you’re able to in the summer. It will dry much quicker and cost less than using a tumble-dryer.

Dom Littlewood said: “Filming this series and meeting the Yabantus was an eye opener. It’s clear that people have become more energy conscious this year – even though sometimes it’s one member of the home leading the change.

“Whilst households are taking lots of positive steps to manage their energy use, by working directly with families we found we were able to identify some further small steps they could take, such as getting a smart meter to monitor energy use.

“My new content series, What’s Watt, and the Super Smart Energy Savers Report offers households access to information they may not have seen before, so they have more tricks up their sleeve when it comes to taking control of their household budgets.”