On average in the UK, people tend to switch their central heating on in October or November and use it on a daily basis up until March or April. This due to the significant drop in temperatures around this time of the year which puts you inside of your house and away from your enclosed patio.
Keeping homes heated contributes to over 70% of household energy consumption. So being able to reduce this figure, while still keeping your home warm enough, significantly cuts down energy bills and helps meet the carbon reduction targets that the UK government is legally obligated to meet.
With this in mind, here are some simple ways to keep your home warmer for longer this winter.
Programming your central heating system to turn the heating on a little earlier than usual, such as 30 minutes before you get out of bed in the morning but at a lower temperature, is a lot more cost-effective than turning it on just as you need it at a higher temperature. This is down to the fact that a boiler heats up at a constant rate whatever temperature you set your thermostat to. Be cautious not to make the mistake of leaving your heating system on low all day, as you are just then paying for heat which you don’t urgently need.
Make the absolute most of the heat that comes from the sun, it is completely free after all. Open your curtains or build a gate which can let the maximum amount of sunlight into your home during the day to make use of this free heat. When the sun sets and it starts to get dark, close your curtains, as they will act as another layer of insulation and keep warmth in your house. Make sure not to have any leaks or gaps between your closed curtains so that the warm air stays indoors and the cold air out more securely. This also really helps in reducing condensation.
You may have your favourite chair or sofa positioned in front of the radiator, but this is actually absorbing more heat that could be keeping your home warmer. By simply moving your furniture and unblocking the radiators, you are giving the opportunity for hot air to circulate your home more efficiently. The same applies to curtains or damp clothes that you are drying, keep them away from radiators so that you are benefiting from the heat source as much as possible.
Around 25% of heat is lost through the roof of a house. This can be significantly reduced by simply installing 25cm of insulation throughout the parameters of your loft. It is also worth investigating what is going on in your walls, as around a third of uninsulated heat is lost this way. It may cost a bit of money to implement these insulation measures, but it could end up saving you up to £160 a year in heating bills, making it a worthwhile investment in the long run.