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For many homeowners, the biggest burden on their finances across the winter months is the cost of keeping their home warm. Here are some tips to help you save on your winter bills.
All central heating boilers should be serviced and safety checked at least once a year by a Gas Safe Registered engineer. If your boiler is old, then consider an upgrade. According to the Energy Saving Trust, a new A-rated condensing boiler can save up to £340 a year on heating bills – most new homes have this type of boiler.
An important job as winter approaches is to make sure that your house does not have any unintended draughts. Floorboards and skirtings usually go ignored but cold air can easily filter through, so check for gaps and fill them in. Check to see if your letterbox is draughty, which can lead to cold hallways – installing a letter box draught excluder that fits onto the inside of your front door is an inexpensive easy DIY job. Remember.
Around a third of all the heat lost in an uninsulated home escapes through walls. So if you live in an older property considering thermal insulation of cavity walls could save you some money.
Insulating your loft is a simple, inexpensive and effective way to reduce energy waste and lower your heating bills. All new houses are fitted with loft insulation that meets the latest building regulations, but if you are in an older property you may want to think about a top-up.
Can help to protect your home from losing heat through windows. It’s important to try to get as much sunlight into your home during the day as possible. But as soon as dusk falls, remember to close curtains to reduce the need for additional heating.
Trapped air or gas prevents hot water from heating your radiators fully, so if you have a radiator that is warm at the bottom but cool at the top, this could mean there is air in the system, which may require bleeding to ensure maximum efficiency of the heating system.
Energy loss through the loft hatch is often overlooked. Insulating the hatch and ensuring that an effective draught seal is in place will help to keep heat energy in and your home warm.
Your thermostat should typically be set between 18°C and 21°C, but by installing thermostatic radiator valves you can set different temperatures in different rooms, according to individual preference. These will be standard in new homes, but are easily fitted to existing radiators.
A common mistake we often make is to place our sofas in front of the radiators which can absorb the heat!
Energy-efficient glazing keeps your home warmer, allowing less heat to be lost. Double glazing is fitted as standard to new homes, but if your house is older, replacing windows could be a good investment as they help to keep warmth in, and reduce external noise.
There are so many energy prices and offers available that it can be hard to work out what the best deals are, which is why so many of us don’t bother. However, comparing the various offers from energy companies can often help you identify a cheaper tariff. Have a look at Uswitch, Compare the Market or MoneySupermarket.
Note: This is a re-publish of an article from December 2015
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