Energy advice

Cosy Homes in Lancashire (CHiL)

Cosy Homes in Lancashire (CHiL) is a partnership of the 15 local authorities in Lancashire, including Blackburn with Darwen.

The partnership offers residents in the region access to grants and advice and support on a range of money saving energy measures to help heat and insulate homes.

You can find more information on CHiL, as well as the full range of energy saving measures.

For more energy saving tips, please visit:

Energy grants

A number of grants are available to owners, private tenants and private landlords.

Grants are available to residents of Lancashire that qualify for certain benefits, or residents with certain health conditions.

If you do not receive a benefit, you may still qualify for a grant.

CHiL may be able to also offer an able to pay deal for those who do not qualify, with a possible 0% interest free offer over 3 to 4 years.

Please see further information on qualifying criteria’s and the grants available.

Grants may be available for the following:

  • cavity wall insulation
  • loft insulation
  • boiler replacement
  • first time central heating
  • external/internal wall insulation
  • replacement electric storage heaters
  • room in roofs (insulation)
  • renewables.

Please note: grants are subject to eligibility criteria and may not fully cover the total cost of the measure. All grants are subject to criteria/funding changes.

If you would like to apply for the above grants, please contact CHiL.

You can also Council on 01254 588876 if you require further information or help on energy matters.

Energy tariffs and switching suppliers

There are many types of tariffs available to support different needs and circumstances. Most suppliers offer many different tariffs for gas and electricity, along with discounts for managing accounts online or choosing a 'dual fuel' deal.

Once a year, your energy supplier should tell you which tariff they have is the cheapest for you. This usually comes with the annual statement - this gives you information about your usage and a prediction for the next year’s usage and costs.

Switching energy suppliers could save you money and can be simple to do. Comparing energy tariffs and deals regularly can help you make sure that you are getting the best gas or electricity tariff for your usage, as well as the best service offer. Comparing deals could also help you cut your bills by switching supplier. Comparisons can be made by either ringing or visiting the comparison websites.

View Ofgem’s accredited price comparison sites.

Cavity wall insulation defects/problems

Cavity wall insulation is designed to improve internal comfort, save money and help residents to keep warm.

However, if you have the wrong type of insulation in your property or the insulation has not been installed in the correct way, then there is a possibility that you may have some problems.

These could range from:

  • saturated, wet and cold walls
  • mould and mildew
  • damage to plaster and peeling wall paper
  • dry rot and wet rot
  • damage to skirting boards and structural
  • timbers
  • damage to carpets and curtains
  • high energy bills.

Further information

  • Homeowner’s guide to overcoming cavity wall insulation problems (see "documents section below")
  • Cavity Insulation Guarantee Agency: 01525 853300
  • Ofgem Appropriate Guarantee: 020 79017000

Private landlords: minimum EPC ratings guidance

Minimum energy efficiency standards (MEES) regulations

From 1 April 2018, there will be a requirement for any properties rented out in the private rented sector to have a minimum energy performance rating of E on an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC). The regulations will come into force for new tenancies and renewals of existing tenancies with effect from 1 April 2018 and for all existing tenancies on 1 April 2020. It will be unlawful to rent a property which breaches the requirement for a minimum E rating, unless there is an applicable exemption.

Many landlords need to take action to improve the energy efficiency of their properties - 1 in 20 homes fall into the worst-rated bands (F and G), failing new energy efficiency standards.

The Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) has issued guidance for landlords on compliance with the 2018 'Minimum Level of Energy Efficiency' standard, in accordance with the Energy Efficiency (Private Rented Property) (England and Wales) Regulations 2015.

CHiL has a number of initiatives available to landlords to help in making your property meet the requirements.

Home Energy Conservation Act 1995

The guidance, issued under the Home Energy Conservation Act 1995, asked local authorities to publish a report on their plans to achieve improved energy efficiency by 31 March 2017 (and every 2 years thereafter up to 31 March 2027).

Local authorities are required to identify practical and cost-effective measures that are likely to result in significant energy reduction in all residential housing in their area.

Blackburn with Darwen Borough Council has produced a report to comply with the Home Energy Conservation Act.

Further information about energy efficiency

  • Cosy Homes in Lancashire: 03306 061 488
  • Blackburn with Darwen Borough Council Home Energy: 01254 588876
  • Housing Standards: 02154 585457
  • Consumer Direct (will take complaints on behalf of Ofgem the gas and electric regulator): 08454 040506
  • Gas Safe Register: 0800 408 5500
  • HSE Gas Safety Advice Line: 0800 300 363
  • National Grid - Gas Emergency: 0800 111 999
  • National Grid 'M' Number (to find out supplier and meter reference number): 0870 608 1524
  • Winter Fuel Payments: 0800 731 0160
  • Cavity Insulation Guarantee Agency (CIGA): 01525 853300
  • Ofgem Appropriate Guarantee: 020 79017000