It is official, the temperature has plummeted and a hat, gloves and a scarf have become essentials! With the cold weather and the expense of Christmas gaining momentum, we spoke to property care and preservation specialists Timberwise, for some advice on how to keep our homes toasty and our energy bills low...
1. Invest in double glazing
Most newly built houses already have double glazing installed but older properties may still only have single glazed windows - this can cause significant heat loss from your home. Remember, in addition to thermal insulation, double glazing also helps to reduce any noise from outside. It's a double winner!
2. Improve your home insulation throughout
Cavity Wall Insulation
To reduce energy being lost through walls, cavity wall insulation could be installed to reduce the air circulation, minimising heat loss through walls. Extra care should be taken to ensure that no gaps are left in the insulation.
In an uninsulated property, up to 25pc of heat can be lost through the roof. Because heat rises, insulating your loft or attic will reduce heat loss and keep you warm without relying on turning up the heat.
If you already have wall and loft insulation installed then consider having floor insulation too. Flooring on the lowest level of the property can feel cold, so insulate if possible.
3. Move around the furniture
One method of keeping warm that is often overlooked is to move your furniture around relative to sources of heat! For example, if radiators are being blocked by furniture, then your house isn't feeling the full effect of heat spreading around the property. Even moving the furniture a few inches away from your radiator can help reduce heat loss.
Top Tip: Make sure that air vents aren't blocked to gain maximum air flow.
4. Enjoy underfloor heating
Underfloor heating may be more costly in the short term, however it is a worthwhile investment in the long term as it keeps your home efficiently and cheaply heated; the monthly running costs of having underfloor heating are relatively low. It won't put a lot of stress on your boiler and is a worthwhile option for both new and existing homeowners.
5. Close your curtains at night
When it is cold and dark outside, closing your curtains and blinds provides an extra barrier to prevent radiant heat loss. Cheap blinds can raise the internal surface temperature to 16 degrees while the much thicker curtains can in fact raise it to a cosier room temperature of nearer 20 degrees, keeping your home warm without having to rely on 'new' heat from radiators and central heating.
Top Tip: In addition to closing your curtains, a useful low cost tip is to add thermal curtains, allowing you to keep warm and stop heat escaping through doors and windows.
6. Block the chimney
Many of us have chimneys that are unused. If this is the case then a large amount of heat is being lost, increasing your energy costs. To stop this from happening simply block the chimney.
7. Light some candles
Lighting candles not only provides light (and heavenly scents!) throughout the rooms of your property, it also helps contribute towards heating the property, potentially helping save money on heating bills.
8. Keep the oven door open
Something as small as leaving your oven door open after baking can circulate heat throughout your kitchen. The smaller the home, the better this technique works. Although make sure you approach this method with caution!
9. Install a programmable thermostat
A lot of money can be saved on heating costs simply by adding a programmable thermostat. When you are at work you should ideally set your thermostat to about 12-13 degrees cooler than you would have it normally in your home.
10. Wrap up warm
This may seem like an obvious one but wearing multiple layers of clothing and using blankets might be the best and simplest idea to stay warm during autumn and winter!
If you found this blog post helpful you might also like 7 money saving tips for your home.
Finally, if you've got any top tips which help you stay warm and cosy, we'd love to hear them! Pop across to our Twitter page where you can send us a tweet.
Disclaimer: Guest blog posts on the Whitegates blog are written by external companies. Whitegates do not endorse the products or services of these companies.