Energy efficiency bulb.jpgcourtesy of Energy Saving Trust www.energysavingscotland.co.uk/scotland

1. Turn your thermostat down.  Reducing your room temperature by 1 degree C could cut your heating bills by up to 10% and typically saves around £50 per year.  If you have a programmer, set your heating and hot water to come on only when required rather than all the time.

2. Is your water too hot?  Your cylinder thermostat should be set at 60 degree C/140 degree 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.

6. If possible, fill up the washing machine, tumble dryer or dishwasher: one full load uses less energy than two half loads.  Try to wash clothes at 30 degrees.

7. Only boil as much water as you need (but remember to cover the elements if you're using an electric kettle).  If  possible use an eco-kettle.

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 minutes longer than ordinary bulbs, and using once can save you around £45 over the lifetime of the bulb.  This saving could be around £70 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 home energy check.  Just answer some simple questions about your home and the Energy Savings Trust will give you a free, impartial report telling you  how you can save up to £250 a year on your household energy bills.