9 Ways to Avoid Spending a Fortune on Heat this Winter

Keeping your home warm makes up around 70% of your annual energy consumption, so anything you can do to reduce this amount is well worth the effort. You don’t have to sit shivering, though, as there are lots of easy tricks you can do to stay warmer for longer – and for less!


Use your curtains wisely

On sunny days, even if it’s cold outside, the sunlight will stream in through the windows, warming up your rooms for free! It’s only a few degrees, but every little helps. Once the sun goes down, stop that heat from escaping by closing the curtains. Simple!

Use your central heating timers

A handy trick is to set your heating to come on 20-30 minutes before you get up in the morning – but at a lower-than-usual temperature. This is cheaper and more effective than turning it to a high temperature when you get up, as your boiler heats up at a constant speed no matter what the “goal” is. Turn the heating off during the day if you’re out, just set it to come on half an hour before home-time – don’t waste all that lovely heating oil you bought here!


Move your sofa away from the radiator

Having your sofa in front of your radiator stops the hot air from getting into the room – it just goes into the padding instead! Move it away a foot or two to let the air move around freely.

Insulate

Around 25% of your heat is lost through your roof, so if you haven’t laid down 25cm of insulation already, do it now before winter really bites. You can also lose a third of your heat through the walls, so it’s worth investing in cavity insulation if you can. You could save up to £200 a year this way and although it’s a big initial outlay, you may qualify for discounted or even free cavity insulation.


Wrap up your tanks

If you use a hot water tank, then lagging it will help to reduce your overall spend by keeping the water hotter for longer – you could save up to £150 a year this way. It’s worth looking at any existing lagging, too, as it may be wearing a bit thin.

Dial it down

Up until recently, the World Health Organisation recommended a minimum temperature of 21C in the living room, but Public Health England changed this to 18C. For every 1C you reduce your temperature by, you’ll be saving 10% on your fuel bills. It’s not hard to do the maths here!


Stop draughts

Seek out cracks and holes and block them – draught excluders under doors, keyhole covers, rugs over floorboards – this could save a further £25 a year.

Get a new boiler

This isn’t cheap, but if your boiler is ten or more years old, it’s time it was retired and replaced with a more efficient model. This could save you up to £350 each year, so it’ll soon pay for itself.

Time to reflect

Reflective panels for your radiators are a real low-cost-high-impact way to reduce heat loss. They simply reflect heat from the backs of the radiators back into the room, otherwise it’d just sink into the walls.


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