Mate, it is freezing outside today. We’re starting to sleep with our windows closed and Short Rib’s heater is back out and ready to go. As much as we might try to deny it, winter is slowly creeping up on us. Not long before we’re wrapping ourselves up in thick coats and scarves before we dare leave the house. If you’re not a freak like me who loves the cold, the freezing temperatures are the part of winter that most of us dread more than any other. Making our homes as warm as possible is a vital part in staying happy during the colder months.
I love winter. I’m in the minority of course, but cold dark mornings and early nights are awesome. Wrapping up warm in front of a fire with warm drinks and the run up to the winter festivities. I love it all. Of course, the downside to having hot chocolate in front of the fire is the cost of it! Although I grit my teeth and put up with the energy bill, the cost of hearing puts many people off warming their houses to a comfortable level (or even at all!). Some of us even find that we are unable to heat our homes adequately, even when we turn the thermostat right up.
The result is many people to suffer the cost of high energy bills or cold houses… and that’s rubbish.
Luckily, there are ways to reduce the cost of heating your home and improve its energy efficiency at the same time. By making some simple changes, you can save energy and heat your home without paying through the nose for it (winner, winner chicken dinner!). Here are some ideas to make your home as cosy as possible without whacking the heating on full blast for four solid months.
Do an Insulation Audit (or Home Energy Assessment)
Audit is the posh word for a double check. Make sure that the insulation in your house is spot on – a professional can normally come out and do this for you! Poor insulation is the main reason for inadequate heating in homes, and causes energy bills to skyrocket. Think about your home as a box, with multiple sides through which heat could escape. If any of the walls or the roof are not insulated properly, your heating will be going outside of your home, rather than warming up the inside. This means that you are paying for heat and then literally throwing it out of the window. Good for Santa on Christmas Eve, not so good for you in your living room!
Speaking of windows, this is a key area to check for insulation. Poor glazing and sealing causes a huge amount of heat to be lost through doors and windows. In turn this contributes to high energy bills and wasted electricity. If you know that your doors or windows need to be replaced, do it now. Better to invest in some high quality ones now than continue to waste your money on heating.
You can also look at the interior of your home to see how you can maximise your heating. If you are heating all of the rooms in your home but only using a few at a time, consider changing your boiler settings so that you only heat the rooms you use. Your home could also benefit from internal bifold doors, which can divide up a larger space and trap the heat in one area. This means you don’t need to use as much energy heating a large space. Draught excluders are a quick and easy way to maximise the energy efficiency of each individual room, preventing the heat from escaping underneath the door. They also double up as toys for the kids if you get one in the shape of a sausage dog!
Create a Routine
Being aware of energy waste is one of the most important steps in tackling it. If you create a routine for every evening, getting into the habit of turning off unnecessary appliances and radiators, you will save a significant amount of money every year. The key to this is making it a part of your everyday routine. That way it feels natural, rather than like a chore. Just like you switch off the lights in your home before you go to bed (I hope, at least!), you can also switch off heaters and radiators in rooms other than the bedrooms, as well as mains switches for your electronic devices.
You should turn your heating down as night (you won’t need it as much when you’re snuggled up in bed). Don’t turn it off altogether though because this could be counter productive (Who knew?!). When you wake up in the morning to a freezing house, you’ll inevitably whack the heating right up. This uses a lot more energy than leaving it on low at a constant pace. Similarly, turning your heating off altogether if you go away in winter could be damaging to your boiler. It can even cause your pipes to freeze, so make sure you don’t fall into this trap.
The key to maximising your heating is to keep it constant and make sure that it isn’t escaping. This means you pay lower energy bills and feel warm and cosy during the winter months.
Do you guys have any hints and tips for staying nice and toasty in winter with your little ones? Besides the usual three jumpers and loads of duvets everywhere? Let us know in the comments how you tackle the horrid heating bill as the weather starts to turn!
Disclaimer: This is a sponsored post.
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