We should all aim to minimise our impact on the environment and by doing this you can also reduce your heating costs. Here are some useful suggestions from Paradigm;
If you turn your heating down by one degree centigrade; this could cut your fuel bill by up to 10%.
Make sure your water is not being heated to scalding temperatures. Setting the water thermostat at 60 degrees centigrade / 140 degrees fahrenheit - in most cases that is adequate for washing and bathing.
To stop heat escaping through windows try to close your curtains as soon as it starts to go dark.
Don't forget to turn lights off when you leave a room. During the day try to pull back curtains to let in as much light as possible.
When you are not using your television, video recorder, DVD player or satellite/cable receiver box switch them off. Your television and other electrical appliances can continue to use as much as 85% electricity even when it is not actually switched on and in use.
Do not leave the fridge door open for longer than necessary and allow cold air to escape. Defrost your fridge regularly and this will help keep it running efficiently and reduce running costs.
Washing machines and tumble driers
Wait until you have a full load before using your washing machine. Otherwise use the half load or economy programme. Try using the low-temperature programme, modern washing powders often work just as effectively. Wring wet clothes out or spin them dry before putting them into a tumble drier. It's faster and saves money.
Pots, pans and kettles
Choose the right size pan to cook your food and keep lids on. Don't overfill the kettle, just heat the amount of water you need.
Energy saving light bulbs use about a quarter of the electricity and last around eight times longer than a standard bulb.
Take a shower instead of a bath. The ordinary shower uses two fifths of the hot water needed for a bath. Shower attachments for bath taps are available from your local DIY store.
Fix a dripping hot water tap and make sure they are turned off properly. In just one day, a dripping hot water tap will not only waste energy but waste enough hot water to fill a bath.
Letterboxes and keyholes
Fit a nylon brush seal or a spring flap onto your letterbox, and put a cover over the keyhole to prevent draughts
Floorboards and skirting boards
Stop draughts and heat escaping by filling in gaps under skirting boards with mastic sealant, newspaper or beading.
Make sure your windows are draught proofed.
Hot water tanks
Insulate your hot water tank with an insulation jacket. It soon pays for itself. Let us know if the hot water tank isn't insultated.
Hot water pipes
Insulate your pipes to help stop heat escaping and prevent burst pipes.
There are grants available to assist some people with insultating homes. See the Warm Front website for more details or contact Customer Services.
There are also a number of useful government websites which may also help you, such as;