As soon as the temperature starts to drop, it can be very tempting to just keep putting the heating on until you’ve warmed up. However, there are much more energy-efficient ways of avoiding the cold which can also save you a fair amount of money.
Try these energy-saving tips this winter:
Put your heating on a timer
Set your heating to a temperature that you’re comfortable with, and schedule it to come on in the mornings and the evenings, or whenever you are in the house. When you aren’t in the house, you should set the heating to around 10-15 degrees to keep it off for the majority of the time.
Putting your heating on a timer will also make sure that you aren’t switching the heating on and off whenever you feel a bit cold or too warm. Your boiler uses a lot of energy trying to warm up again, so try and only do it a couple of times per day.
Open the curtains during the day
Make note of the windows that get the most sun shining through, and leave those curtains open during the day. This way, the sun will do some of the boiler’s work for it as it will heat up your rooms a little bit.
Just make sure you close the curtains when it starts to get dark in order to keep the heat in and avoid cold drafts from the windows.
Seal any air leaks
Check for cracks and gaps anywhere where two objects meet. For example, doors and window frames, attic hatches, vents, TV wires going through walls, and electrical outlets.
You can seal any air leaks by weather-stripping any movable building components.
Keep your boiler serviced
Broken boilers are a homeowner’s worst nightmare – make sure you get yours serviced annually, around autumn time.
Turn down the temperature of your water heater
If your water gets too hot to put your hands under without burning yourself, it’s a good idea to turn down the temperature of your water heater to around 50 degrees (Celsius). You’ll save the extra energy it took to heat it up to the previously hot temperature.
Avoid lots of Christmas lights or use LED
The best option, of course, is not to have any Christmas lights at all. But for those of us who love Christmas and all the festive decorations that come with it (and who doesn’t?), we should stick to LED lights to avoid high electricity bills in December and January.
Prevent the loss of heat through the fireplace
Keep your fireplace damper closed when you aren’t using the fireplace in order to keep heat in, or, if you don’t use your fireplace, seal the chimney altogether.
Keep doors closed
Internal doors should stay closed when the heating is on, in order to keep the heat in each room. It will take less energy to heat each individual room than the entire house at once.
If you spend most of your evening in the living room, consider turning down the radiators in other rooms, and focus on keeping that room toasty and warm.
Switch off and unplug when you’re done
Even if you aren’t using an appliance, if it’s still plugged in and switched on at the socket, it will use energy. Unplug and switch off whenever you can – and that include the TV!
Check your insulation
Have a look in your attic and check that the insulation is evenly distributed and that you have enough of it. If it sits below or level with the roof joists, you should consider adding some more.