Many households are enjoying the unusually mild weather for this time of year: but be warned, things are likely to change soon. As we move into the colder spells, we quite naturally use a lot more energy to keep warm. It's ever so easy to just turn up the thermostat on your central heating without giving it a second thought. In this present economic climate we all want to save as much as we can. One way this can be done is by taking a few simple steps to help reduce the energy you use in your home.
Gallions Housing Association has published ten top tips for helping households do just that.
There is also a video on the association's website promoting ways individuals can save energy and money. Log onto www.gallionsha.co.uk/energy, take a tour around the energy saving house and start saving today.
The association will also be sending out around 7,000 energy saving leaflets to all its residents in Newham, Greenwich, Bexley, Lewisham and Tower Hamlets.
Gallions top ten energy saving tips
1. Turn your thermostat down. Reducing your room temperature by 1°C could cut your heating bills by up to 10 percent and typically saves around £55 per year.
2. Is your water too hot? Your cylinder thermostat should be set at 60°C/140°F.
3. Close your curtains at dusk to stop heat escaping through the windows and check for draughts around windows and doors.
4. Always turn off the lights when you leave a room.
5. Don't leave appliances on standby and remember not to leave laptops and mobile phones on charge unnecessarily. Doing this could save you up to £30 a year.
6. If possible, fill up the washing machine, tumble dryer or dishwasher: one full load uses less energy than two half loads.
7. Only boil as much water as you need (but remember to cover the elements if you're using an electric kettle). Only boiling what you need could save up to £10 a year.
8. A dripping hot water tap wastes energy and in one week wastes enough hot water to fill half a bath, so fix leaking taps and make sure they're fully turned off.
9. Use energy saving light bulbs. They last up to 10 times longer than ordinary bulbs, and using one can save you around £40 over the lifetime of the bulb. This saving could be around £65 over its lifetime if you're replacing a high wattage incandescent bulb, or one used for more than a few hours a day.
10. Do a home energy check at www.energysavingtrust.org.uk. Just answer some simple questions about your home and there'll give you a free, impartial report telling you how you can save up to £300 a year on your household energy bills.