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Today's energy saving tip ...

Don't use the standby function on electrical appliances. Gadgets and appliances still use power on 'standby' and account for a massive 6% of all electricity usage in homes.

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If you start using more energy efficient products and change a few of your daily energy habits you could save up to 200 a year and do your bit for the environment.

Even if gas and electricity prices stayed as they are today, many of us have now realised that our daily energy habits and shopping choices have a significant impact on the bills we receive.

A substantial chunk of your annual bills will be for energy that is wasted and a large part of this will be down to inefficient products and appliances you use every day such as lightbulbs, your fridge, washing machine and boiler.

Is it cost effective to replace your inefficient appliances?

Of course, there is a significant initial cost to replacing a washing machine or boiler and, in reality, most of us are unlikely to replace them until they break down or become outdated.

But outdated and inefficient appliances are contributing to higher bills right now and the longer you stick with them, the more money you waste. The initial cost of replacing even the most expensive appliance can be recovered in just 3-6 years through lower energy and the savings will go on long after you've got your money back.

Which energy saving products should you buy first?

Ideally you should start by replacing the most inefficient products and appliances first but these tend to be the most expensive to replace such as fridges, freezers, washing machines, tumble dryers and boilers.

When you do replace them, look for A rated models that carry the 'energy saving recommended' logo. For fridges, freezers, washers and dryers the energy saving recommended logo complements the European Union energy label which displays how much energy an appliance uses on a scale of A to G.

The easiest household product to replace are your lightbulbs. For just a few pounds each you can quickly install energy saving light bulbs that use five times less electricity and last ten times longer than normal bulbs.

As well as products that consume energy you should also replace or intall measures that help keep the heat in your home for longer. The cheapest of these are draught excluders and covers for your letter box and key holes. Next is loft insulation followed by cavity wall insulation and double glazed windows.

Grants for energy saving products

If some of these energy efficient products sound pricey, you'll be pleased to hear that there are energy saving grants and subsidies available to help pay for them, particularly if you're over 60 or on certain state benefits.

Local councils, government schemes and energy suppliers offer savings on everything from energy saving light bulbs to solar heating panels and new energy efficient condensing boilers.

Energy Saving Tip: Fit energy saving light bulbs - they will use around a quarter of the electricity and will last ten times longer than an ordinary lightbulb.