As Tom Jones famously sang “It’s cold outside” and it’s not going to get much warmer for a few months longer. Heating your home in the winter can get expensive and take up much of a familys outgoings each month.
Even being able to lower the temperature by a few degrees can add up to a nice saving at the end of every month.
1. Heat your home when you need the heating, not all of the time
There is a common debate about whether you should heat your home on low and constant or in bursts to the temperature you require.
Proponents of low and constant say that turning on the boiler and raising the temperature of each room is energy intensive and far less efficient that keeping a room at a constant temperature.
But this isn’t true. Heat is constantly being wasted, slipping through gaps under doors and through the ceiling and your heating is constantly working to maintain the temperature set on the thermometer.
This means that if you’re not in the house or have gone to sleep all of that energy is slipping away, and that total energy will in most cases be greater than the energy required to initially heat up a room.
So in short, only use the heating when you need it.
2. Tin foil behind radiators
This one is simple – heat is lost through the wall every time a radiator is turned on. The less heat that is lost through the wall, the more that stays in the room.
A cheap and fairly effective way of reflecting heat is through tin foil placed behind the radiators. The most cost effective way to do this is through tin foil purchased in any supermarket however specialist polyester and polyethylene radiator tin foil can be purchased from here for £5.99 for 4m.
3. Sealing outlets and switches
This one is a bit more tricky and for those that haven’t handles plugs and sockets before and are unsure of how to shut off power to the area they’re working on this might be one to skip over or leave to an electrician. If you’re confident in what you’re doing then read on:
- Turn off the power to the area youre working on
- Remove the cover plate to the switch
- Choose the proper seal and remove the cut outs
- Apply the foam seal over the outlet an line up the holes
- Replace the cover plate
Do this across all plug sockets in the house and this will help reduce a fairly noticeable heat loss.
4. Magnet over keyhole
Front and back doors are the first line of defence against the cold, often meaning hallways are the coldest parts of the house. That’s because heat is slowly escaping through gaps around and in the door.
An often forgotten culprit can be the tiny keyhole slowly sucking heat out to the outdoors. A keyhole magnet which can cost as little as a few pounds can be placed over the keyhole particularly overnight, to stop any heat escaping.
5. Draught Excluders
A classic trick for retaining as much heat as possible. Fabric draught excluders placed at the bottom of a door stop heat escaping underneath and rubber draught excluders along the edge of a door can ensure as little heat is lost as possible. This combined with a magnetic keyhole cover will seal up doors.
Essentially look for anywhere in your house that has a gap where heat can escape and plug it up. Gaps that lead outside should be the first priority, but internal heat loss shouldn’t be left unnoticed. Get insulating!