As summer draws to a close it’s natural that we start to think of the cold weather coming our way over the next few months. Gone will be the flip flops and shorts and out will come the coats and jumpers. It’ll only be so long until you put your heating on for the first time since last winter but we all know that heating your home can not only be expensive for your pocket but also for the environment.
In an ideal world we’d all heat out homes using air source heat pumps, solar power and wind turbines but for many people installing these technologies is either impractical or overly expensive. So while they should be the ideal solution to keeping your home comfortably warm all winter, what is a suitable “plan b” that any of us can use to stay warm and yet reduce our energy consumption during the winter irrespective of the type of home we live in?
Install Soft Furnishings
While bare wood floors and leather sofas are fashionable and look attractive they won’t help to make your home feel any warmer. Soft furnishings like thick curtains, deep carpets and fluffy cushions manage to trap warm air in their fibres, not only reducing the heat that your home inevitably loses but also helping to trap that warm air in your living space making your home feel warmer with less heating.
The older your home is the more draughty it probably is. From badly-fitted windows to gaps under your front door there are a multitude of ways in which warm air can easily escape from your centrally-heated home. Consider investing in a few basic supplies like a draught excluder, double glazing film and a chimney balloon which can all add up and make a very noticeable difference to how warm your home feels.
Improve Radiator Efficiency
Our home radiators can often be surprisingly inefficient. They’re often placed near windows where the heat can escape, standard hot-water radiators can become filled with air bubbles, heat can escape through the wall behind your radiators and so on meaning that you’re really paying for warmth that you’re not making full use of.
Start off by bleeding all your radiators to remove any air bubbles, then install reflectors behind all your radiators to help force all available warmth into the middle of the room rather than into the cold walls.
On a side note one other useful piece of kit for improving the efficiency of your radiators is to consider buying a radiator booster. These fantastic little tools resemble a long, thin tube which sits on the top of your radiator. Inside the tube is a small fan and a thermostat. Once you have plugged the radiator booster in it then blows the hot air into your room, making the room feel warmer quicker and thus cutting down on your heating bill – all while costing pennies to run each year.
Increase The Humidity
Strangely it seems most people find that a room with a reasonable degree of relative humidity “feels” warmer to be in – and consequently can turn their heating down without feeling uncomfortable in any way. Therefore a smart tip to help you keep your home warm but still save energy is to consider investing in a low-power humidifier unit which you can run in order to stop the centrally-heated air in your home from drying out and feeling unnecessarily cold.