When it comes to keeping ourselves barricaded against the cold on freezing nights, we all have our own methods: you might opt for a roaring fire whilst wrapped in a duvet, or you possibly crank the central heating up until your house feels like the inside of an industrial oven.
This is all very well and good, but it’s important to realize that you could be wasting a lot of money in lost heating from trying to keep yourself as warm as possible. This is because heat escapes in all kinds of ways from your house, not just from a carelessly open window or creaking old door frames.
There are several steps that you can take to keep heat inside your house: some of them may be time consuming, whilst others could cost a fair amount of money in the short term (but saving you a lot of money in the long run). One of our tips even gives you the excuse to do a spot of decorating in your living room!
With energy bills climbing higher and higher each year, stretching people’s budgets even thinner, it’s important that you take time to consider these heat-saving tips which might not have occurred to you otherwise. You might choose to follow each piece of advice we give you, or maybe you’ll just choose the one tip that you think will suit your house the most. It’s up to you.
It’s important that you budget properly for each of our heat-saving tips: for example, attic insulation is one of the biggest investments you’ll ever make as a homeowner, so it is vital that you can cover for every eventuality whilst the work is being done and once it is completed. You don’t want to come up short and find that you’re left with a project that can’t be finished!
Fit Attic Insulation
The largest source of heat loss is your attic space and roof. Attic insulation is a long-term solution to your problem, and we recommend that you consider this step before any taking any others. Firstly, you’ll need to check for any signs of damp or dry rot – both of these problems need to be eliminated in order to prevent the insulation from developing mould.
You can either install the insulation yourself to save some money – make sure you get advice on how to do this before you attempt it – or have the insulation fitted by a specialist company. This depends on the size of your attic and how easy it is to access all parts of it. If you don’t think you’d feel safe or are unsure of where to start, get a professional company to do the job.
Put Sealant On Windows
The microscopic gaps in your window frames let out a lot more heat than you would imagine. However, this is a simple problem that hardly takes any time at all to fix. Use either liquid sealant or strips of specialised tape to fill along the edges of your window frames from the inside. The liquid sealant needs to be left for up to fifteen hours before it sets properly.
Cold weather can cause the sealant to crack, so make sure to re-apply it if you notice any flaking. Also, sealant tape can take paint with it if it is taken off, so consider using the liquid version if you are worried about potential damage to any windowsills.
Maintain Your Water Heater
Your water heater is one of the main culprits when it comes to excess heat escaping from your house, because it is constantly heating the water it stores. This is known as standby heat loss. Make sure that your water heater has thermal resistance, and regularly check the tank for leaks.
It’s also a good idea turning down your heater by a few degrees. This might seem like a bad idea leading to freezing showers and tepid baths, but if you don’t turn it town too much you won’t notice any difference.
Hang A Heavy Blind
This is the part where you get to have a bit of fun. Heavy made to measure roller blinds will help to trap heat before it has a chance to escape through the gaps in your window frames – which will have been reduced by the sealant that you’ve already applied to your windows. This is a good excuse for a bit of redecorating in amongst the more mundane aspects of heat-proofing your house.
Fit Damper To Fireplace
A damper is a device which seals your fireplace chimney when you are not losing it. This prevents cold air from entering your house when your fireplace is not in use, and stops heat escaping up your chimney. It’s important to note that you can’t have a damper on a gas fire, as this is a safety risk. Dampers can only be fitted on log-burning fireplaces. Make sure that the damper is open every time that you light a fire, before closing it fully once your fire is finished.
If you have a gas fireplace, make sure that you arrange for it to be professionally assessed and cleaned once a year. This will highlight any faults which could be causing you to lose heat.
Hopefully you have found this guide to minimizing heat loss useful. These methods should make your energy bills more manageable.