Winter is coming, which means it’s time for you to take a tour of your home, look for problem areas in your home and central heating system, and fix what needs to be fixed before the days begin to cool off.
While your top priority is to stay warm and cosy throughout the winter, it’s also important to make sure that you’re not wasting warm air. After locating problem areas, apply these techniques to reduce heat loss and save energy this winter.
Areas that should be properly insulated are your roof, loft or attic, cavity wall, solid wall and floor. Insulating your roof and attic will reduce the amount of heat lost when warm air rises and escapes through the roof. If you don’t have cavity insulation in your home’s wall, use sprayed-foam insulation in the meantime, then upgrade to a material with a higher insulation value whenever possible.
Door thresholds, windows and electrical boxes create drafts which allow warm air to escape and cold air to come in. Place weatherstripping and caulking to all areas where air can pass through.
Eliminating drafts will dramatically improve the efficiency of your heating system and help to reduce your heating bills. If you are looking to inmprove your home insulation in the long run, look into replacing your poorly insulated windows with double-glazed windows. Double glazing helps lock the heat in your home. As a temporary measure, you can seal up your windows with plastic film so that cold outdoor air does not affect your indoor climate.
If you find other leaks around wall fixtures that are letting heat escape, seal them up with draught strips. Foam gaskets are also effective draft-proofing alternatives that you can get from a local hardware store. An open fire place is an escape route for hot air, so keep it closed when you’re not using it.
Insulate Tanks, Pipes and Radiators
Before it starts to cool off, check your hot water cylinder, pipes and radiators. If you have one, check your central heating system,to ensure it is working effectively. Don’t wait for winter before checking your components.
Faulty radiators and burst pipes can be a huge problem, and having one break in the winter can be quite uncomfortable. See if your pipes, radiators, boiler pressure and pilot light are in good condition. After you do, insulate your pipes, tank body and radiators to block off cold air and prevent heat loss through exposed surfaces.
On top of these techniques, you should also watch your useage and try to cut down on wasteful habits, such as using hot water when it’s not necessary, leaving the heat pump on permanently etc. Only use hot water when you’re bathing or taking a shower. Refrain from pre-rinsing dishes with warm water before putting them in the dishwasher, or using hot water for washing laundry. If you follow these tips, you should see a reduction in your home heating bill, whilst still keeping warm, cosy and dry throughout the winter.