Keep your home warm

9th January 2023
Chil Cover Photo

Introduction

As we head into 2023, it’s a time to be optimistic. Despite all the challenges we are facing at the moment, and concerns with the cost of living, there are still opportunities for us to be savvy and save money. The first step we can take is at home.

In this article, we go through the steps you can take to keep warm this winter, while saving yourself some money, with our top tips and advice.

 

Keeping warm

Ideally, your home’s temperature should be around 18 degrees celsius, for it to be safe and comfortable - particularly for vulnerable people.

While our tips may seem obvious, they can make a huge difference.

 

Stay on top of your boiler

Your house is the first point where you can save money. A modern A-rated boiler is around 35% more efficient than previous models, this could mean a saving of up to £490 per year, and a reduction to your home's carbon emissions.

Boilers account for 60% of what you spend in a year on energy bills, so an efficient boiler makes a big difference when it comes to cutting down on costs.

 

Types of boilers:

  • Combination
    Supplies hot water for both radiators and taps and they do it almost instantly, with no hot water tank
  • System Boiler
    These supply hot water to feed radiators and a separate storage tank

 

It’s important to have your boiler and gas appliances serviced regularly by a qualified professional to ensure it is running efficiently. Arrange a service of your boiler with Cosy Homes in Lancashire.

 

Using your controls wisely

If you have a central heating system, whether its gas, LPG or oil-fired, your full set of controls should ideally include a boiler thermostat, a timer or programmable thermostat.

Using your control wisely can save you £75-£150 per year, so let’s discuss the kind of thermostats that would be good for you:

  • Room thermostat
    A room thermostat will switch off your heating when your room gets to the right temperature
    We recommend setting it between 18 and 21 degrees
  • Cylinder thermostat
    This is similar to a room thermostat. It will switch off your water heater when it gets to the temperature you set. We recommend 60 degrees celsius
  • Thermostatic radiator valves
    These let you control the temperature of each room separately. They’re smart and sense the air temperature and switch radiators on and off automatically
  • Programmers
    A good programmer lets you control when your central heating, and hot water go on/off. The best ones let you control each element individually

If you have a timer on your central heating system, set the heating and hot water to come on only when required for example, 30 minutes before you get up in the morning and set it to switch off 30 minutes before you are due to leave or go to bed.

Top tip: turning your central heating down by 1 degree could cut your heating bill by up to £75 per year.

 

Insulation is key

Managing heat loss in your home is critical to ensure you’re keeping your rooms and home warm. Air leaks along doors and windows can be disruptive to your temperature control method, and although you can’t see the heat leaving your home, making these changes can heavily influence your average energy bills and energy-saving measures.

 

Insulate your loft

Heat rises, so a home without loft insulation loses the majority of its heat through its roof.

You can always tell who hasn’t insulated their loft space because of the pigeons and seagulls sitting on their roof, enjoying all the warmth.

Fitting insulation in your loft, attic or roof space is a great way to make your house warmer. It lasts for more than 40 years, saves money on your energy bills and there’s an opportunity to install them fee of charge or at a discounted rate.

Loft insulation is a barrier of material within your roof space. It can either be laid between the joists or the rafters.

There’s the option to insulate your loft yourself, but there can be some risks. To give you peace of mind, contact Cosy Homes in Lancashire who will organise a qualified local contractor to come and look at your property and will look to access funding for you.

 

Other benefits of roof insulation include:

  • Lower heating bills - around £150 per year
  • Reducing your home’s carbon footprint
  • Improving its energy efficiency rating
  • Increasing your home’s value

 

Insulate your home

Cavity wall insulation

If your home was built after the 1920s, the chances are that it’s got a cavity wall; filling them with wall insulation could be very cost-effective.

Although cavity insulation could save you up to £160 a year in heating bills, you should only consider cavity wall insulation if:

  • Your home has unfilled cavity walls made of brick
  • The cavities are at least 2 inches wide
  • The brickwork or masonry is in good condition
  • Your external walls are accessible. If some are joined to neighbouring house, the installer will need to insert a cavity barrier
  • Your home is less than 12 metres (about 4 storeys) high
  • Your internal walls are dry. Wet wall insulation is worse than no wall insulation. For the same reason, cavity insulation is not suitable if the walls are regularly exposed to driving rain
  • There are no areas of steel or timber-framed construction

Solid wall insulation

If your home was built before 1920, it probably has solid external walls rather than cavity walls.

Solid walls let twice as much heat escape as cavity walls, so insulating them does make sense and you can save £150 - £450 per year on your energy bills, however it is an expensive measure. This can be done internally and externally, so reconsider each measure carefully before you make your decision.

Fun fact: Natural insulating materials, such as hemp, flax and sheep wool, are thought to be more durable over time than their traditional counterparts - though you might have to wait 100 years or so to be absolutely sure.

For more information on how to heat your home and save money this winter, read our useful guide.
 

 

Cheap ways to heat your room

  • Place foil behind your radiators to reflect heat back into the room. Only use radiators which are attached to an outside wall
  • Buy thermal backed curtains or use detachable linings to keep your rooms warmed in the winter and cooler in the summer
  • Open curtains and blinds during the day to let in natural light and close them at dusk to stop heat escaping through the windows and check for draughts around windows and doors

 

For more information on how to heat your home and save money this winter, read our useful guide.

Our team is on hand to advise you on all the schemes that are currently available in the Lancashire area, assess your eligibility and help you with your application: Apply here.

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