Martin Lewis shares the three hours to avoid when using your washing machine
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Money Saving Expert, Martin Lewis, has urged homeowners to avoid using washing machines and other energy-guzzling home appliances at certain times of day to reduce the risk of power outages.
Now that autumn is upon us and the days are getting colder, darker and shorter, the demand for energy is going up.
According to the money guru, peak periods for the National Grid leads to electricity demands surging across the country and an increased risk of power cuts - not what you need on a chilly evening when you're trying to cosy up.
He suggests mixing up your routine to ensure you aren't just clicking the 'ON' button when you sit down to watch Corrie like everyone else.
He explained the situation during his regular segment on the show: "We are looking at energy difficulties this winter. We hope there will not be any blackouts.
"But there are emergency scenarios where power cuts in different regions are possible that have been put forward by National Grid."
Lewis revealed that the peak times for using energy in the UK are between 4pm and 7pm and that it would be a good idea if people could lower their usage during this time period.
He added: "If we can avoid using lots of energy between 4pm and 7pm and it makes no difference to our lives, then we should all be somewhat conscious of that, whether or not it’s cheaper, because it will collectively help us all."
As an incentive to get people to use less power during peak times, the National Grid launched its demand flexibility service last winter, which offers discounts to people who sign up and agree to use less energy during peak times.
Carrying on into the winter months of 2023/2024, National Grid says more than a million homes and businesses signed up to the scheme, which is run in conjunction with 26 energy suppliers.
Those taking part will need a smart meter and will save energy (and money) by doing things such as delaying use of the oven, washing machine, dryer or not charging phones and other devices at peak times.
The National Grid has said people will be able to save anything from a few quid to £30 depending on how much energy is saved.
In its first run in January this year, the National Grid paid suppliers between £3 and £6 for every kilowatt hour of energy saved between 5pm and 6pm.
One family taking part in the scheme told the BBC they had gone out for a bike ride to avoid using energy at home, saying it was ‘a great excuse to get out for an hour and get some exercise while saving energy and money’.