The cheapest and best way to reduce your energy bills is to insulate your home. Loft insulation alone can cut your energy usage by 20%. And these days there are recycled, non-toxic insulation products like Warmcel as an alternative to the traditional fibreglass.
Newer houses are already likely to have cavity wall insulation, as this is one of the best ways of keeping your house warm and your bills down. And remember, grants may be available from the energy companies for certain home improvements like loft and cavity wall insulation.
Other energy saving tips include:
- Draught-proofing - you'll be surprised what a difference this can make. DIY shops sell a wide range of easy-to-apply products for doors, windows, skirting boards etc.
- Insulating hot water tanks and pipes - new tanks already tend to have a hard insulating foam outer, otherwise an insulating jacket is cheap and easy to fit. You can use strips of foam to insulate exposed pipes.
- Double glazing - you can literally halve the amount of heat lost through windows by installing double glazing. Plus, it cuts down on outside noise. It's worth looking at some of the greener double glazing products now available.
- Radiators - just by simply putting aluminium foil behind your radiators, you can reflect heat back into your rooms. Or look at special insulating panels (e.g. Novitherm) which fit behind radiators.