10 energy efficiency resolutions for 2015

As 2014 draws to a close, your attention might have turned to what changes you'll make in the New Year - and what resolutions you choose to make this happen.

Here's some ideas you might want to consider if efficiency is to move up your agenda in 2015.

1. Choose more efficient appliances: Are you hoping to upgrade some of your appliances next year? If so, take note of energy ratings to help you make the most efficient choices.

2. Avoid standby mode: Make it your resolution to avoid leaving the TV and other electrical products in standby mode - flicking the off switch could save more than you think!

3. Change your light bulbs: Are some of your light fittings still running off traditional bulbs? Switching to more efficient versions could be just what you need for an eco-friendly future.

4. Use your fridge effectively: The fridge is one of just a few appliances that runs 24/7, so pledge to use it more efficiently in 2015. Make sure the seal is working properly and avoid leaving the door open longer than necessary.

5. Cut down on shower time: While standing under a hot shower may be a relaxing experience, it also has an impact on your energy bills. Invest in a three-minute timer - it's long enough to get yourself clean without your finances taking a hit.

6. Thaw foods from the freezer: How many times have you reached for something from the freezer last minute? This leads to increased cooking times, which can build up over the course of the year, so think ahead and thaw them first. 

7. Let clothes dry naturally: Although a tumble dryer can seem like a lifesaver when the weather takes a turn for the worst, there are plenty of opportunities to let your clothes dry naturally. Putting washing out on the line will save you more than you think - and it's free!

8. Invest in insulation: If you live in an older property where insulation might not be up to scratch, spend some money getting this sorted in the New Year. It can help with both heating and cooling your home.

9. Isolate unused rooms: Every home has rooms that aren't used as much as the others, so don't waste energy heating and cooling them when it's not necessary.

10. Wash clothes at lower temperatures: Many modern detergents will work at lower temperatures, so think about turning your washing machine down a notch and see the effect it has on your bills.

Posted by Nikki Wilson-Everett