Homeowners could save up to £140 a year on energy bills thanks to a remote heating control system launched by British Gas this week.

The system, developed with energy monitoring specialist AlertMe, allows users to set a schedule for their home's temperature on a PC or laptop and turn their boiler on and off via their mobile phone.

This means customers can adjust their heating to suit their movements using a smart phone app or by simply sending a text, saving time, money and energy.

British Gas said remote heating control could help customers better control their energy use, as research found those that left their boiler on while at work or away for the weekend paid on average an extra £140 a year.

Dean Keeling, managing director of British Gas Smart Homes, said: "With the British weather as unpredictable as ever, remote heating control will give customers greater peace of mind by allowing them to schedule and adjust their heating on the go, so they only need to heat their home when they need to."

The start-up package includes a wireless-enabled programmable thermostat, a home hub and installation by a British Gas engineer and costs £149 when bought with a new central heating installation, £199 retrofit for other existing customers and £229 for new customers.

Customers may need to weigh up the benefits of the system with the start up cost, and consider other energy saving measures such as room thermostats, TRV’s and alternative control systems.