Simple ways to heat your home for less
You might think that cranking up the thermostat is the simplest way to heat your home, but there are plenty of other ways to ensure your living space stays toasty – and they can also save you money.
1. Don’t hang clothes over radiators. It might make them dry quicker but it makes the radiator work harder and so use more energy.
2. Turn the thermostat down by one degree. This is a message that keeps rearing its head in a money and heating advice context; some experts believe that you won’t feel the difference and that the ideal temperature to set a thermostat at is between 18°C – 21°C (64°F – 70°F).
If you do still feel chilly, try popping on a jumper and some thick socks or hiding under a blanket instead of turning the heating up.
3. When cooking in the oven, once you’ve taken everything out leave the door open a little and let some of the heat escape into the room. Just be sure to be extra careful and not allow pets or children into the room.
4. Underfloor heating is another example; a good system will come with controls and work best in bathrooms or kitchen with tiled floors, which can get cool over winter. Using underfloor heating means you can turn down the radiators in that room and enjoy lowering that gas bill just a little. Talk to an expert, such as The Underfloor Heating Store, about the options available.
5. Check for draughts around the home and invest in excluders and insulation strips for doors and windows. If you have single pane windows you could try the bubble wrap trick, which can help reduce condensation and is quick, cheap and easy to install. Take a look at this guide on how to use bubble wrap to insulate your windows.
6. Put tinfoil behind radiators to quickly reflect the heat back into the room. Invest in a proper radiator heat reflector for long-term use.
7. Close the curtains to ensure any heat doesn’t escape through the windows.
8. Try not to use kitchen and bathroom fans for extended periods of time. They’re great at sucking out smells when cooking or moisture after a shower but they also suck out hot air.
9. Switch energy provider and you could save up to £200 (around $300) a year. Head to a money comparison site, such as Compare the Market (not Meerkat), Go Compare or Google Shopping, enter the details of your last bill and they’ll do all the work for you, pulling up service providers for you to take your pick from.
10. Turn down the radiators in rooms that are not used often, such as guest bedrooms and downstairs toilets. Do not turn them off completely or you could risk mould and condensation problems; simply have them set on a lower temperature to reduce heating costs.
You’ll soon be a heat savvy, money saving expert and inflicting your newfound knowledge on everyone. So now it’s time to get out there, handing draught excluders and bubble wrap out to the masses and scolding those who leave their curtains open when it gets dark.
Article by Debbie Fletcher