When winter is around the corner and with energy prices set to continue to rise, many UK homeowners will be searching for ways to keep their homes as warm as possible while keeping energy bills to a minimum.
There are several possible reasons why your house is cold. Your boiler and/or radiators may be old and inefficient or not powerful enough and/or your windows and walls might be poorly insulated. Your living habits may be making things worse, e.g. leaving windows open or failing to get the boiler serviced every year.
From small lifestyle changes you can make to your everyday routine to replacing your heating system, if you’re wondering what is the best way to make a cold house warm, here are 11 ideas to help.
11 Ways to Make a Cold House Warm
Try draught-proofing your home
There are probably lots of gaps and cracks throughout your home which are letting heat out such as gaps in door and window seals, keyholes, pet doors and letter boxes. Try to cover as many of the gaps as you can with tape. If you are spending most of your time in one room of the house, turn the radiators down or off in other rooms and use a draught excluder at the bottom of the door to keep the heat where you need it.
Lag central heating pipes
Hot water is transported around your home via metal pipes which will be losing heat. Add some insulation or lagging to the pipes to keep the water hot as it travels from the boiler to your radiators.
Bleed your radiators
If your radiators are not heating up as much as they used to and/or there are cold patches when you touch it, you may need to bleed the radiators. This simply means that air has become trapped in the radiators and is preventing hot water from filling the radiator. By turning the bleed key on the radiator you can release this air.
Get your boiler serviced
To keep the boiler running effectively, efficiently and safely (and to ensure your manufacturer’s warranty remains valid) you should get it serviced by a professional heating engineer every year. The service is also an opportunity for engineers to fix small issues before they cause a costly breakdown.
Visit Boiler Guide to get a free no-obligation boiler service quote from a fully-qualified Gas Safe engineer in your area.
Hang curtains to close at night
Hanging thick curtains at windows is a simple way to reduce heat lost through windows and to keep cold air out. When the sun is out, make sure the curtains are open to let the natural heat of the sun in.
Place foil-covered card behind radiators
Radiators emit heat from the front and back which means a lot of heat is absorbed by the wall rather than heating the room. You can prevent this by covering a large sheet of card in tin-foil and placing it between the radiator and wall so heat is reflected back into the room.
Declutter space around radiators
When radiators are behind furniture or piles of clutter the heat emitted by the radiator will be absorbed by the objects in front of it rather than heating the space in the room. Clear the space in front of your radiators and consider fitting a shelf above it force heat which is travelling upwards back into the room.
Put rugs on hardwood floors
If you have hardwood floors there may be small gaps between each panel which may be letting heat escape. Try covering the floor with a rug to reduce heat lost through floorboards.
Research has found that 35% of heat loss occurs through walls, doors and windows with a further 25% escaping through the roof and 10% through the floor. By adding or improving the insulation in your loft, cavity walls and floors you will keep more heat inside the home.
Install double glazing
Replacing single glazed windows with double or triple glazed windows can also reduce heat loss in the home. Unfortunately, replacing windows can be costly so you might want to consider sealing gaps in the window frames or adding thermal window film to the glass to minimize heat loss until you can afford to replace the windows.
Replace your boiler
While the above tips might help, if you boiler and current heating system is old, broken or generally inefficient you will be spending unnecessary money fighting a losing battle to keep the house warm. If your boiler is over 8 years old a new modern replacement boiler will be able to heat your home more effectively and often costs less to run. In fact, according to the Energy Saving Trust, replacing an old G rated boiler with a brand new model could reduce energy costs by as much as £315 per year.
A new boiler should make your home warmer, lower your energy bills, reduce your carbon footprint and will include a manufacturer’s warranty to give you peace of mind against breakdowns.
If you think it might be time to update your heating system with a new boiler, head over to Boiler Guide where you can get free quotes from up to 3 heating engineers based in your local area.