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Here are some great tips on how to keep your home warm over the winter and save money at the same time. 
 
The inevitably cold winter is just around the corner and may come as quite a shock to many expats in the UK.  
 
Here are some great tips on how to keep your home warm over the winter and save money at the same time. Heating counts for 70% of your household energy consumption, so listen up! 
 
 
 
 
Embrace the Sun 
 
What is the cheapest source of heat? The sun! So, make the most of it while you can (not that the sun will quit on us, but we don’t get as many hours as sunlight at this time of the year). 
 
Keeping your curtains or blinds open during the day will allow the natural sunlight to fill the room and keep it warm. Remember to close them at night as it will act as another layer of insulation that will keep the heat in. 
 
 
 
 
Time Your Water Heater 
 
Some advice from the Centre for Sustainable Energy is to program your heating to turn on 30 minutes before you wake up in the morning. Setting it at a lower temperature that begins to heat up before you wake up is cheaper than turning it up high as soon as you wake up. 
 
Boilers heat up at a constant speed no matter what you set it at. Fans of Channel 4’s “Peep Show” will remember that Jez’s idea to set the temperature higher to trick the boiler into thinking “it has something to aim for” is of course, utter nonsense. 
 
 
 
 
Move Your Sofa 
 
Many people have their sofas in front of, or up against a radiator, thinking that it will warm the sofa and create a futuristic heat chair. This also doesn’t work. If you’re doing that, it means the sofa is absorbing the heat that could be circulating around your home.  
 
It is also worth mentioning that drying your clothes, curtains, or bed sheets on the radiator will also block the heat from spreading around the room. 
 
 
 
 
Insulation 
 
A lot of heat is lost through the roof. Around 25% in fact. Just 25cm of loft insulation can reduce the heat loss. As well as the loft, the walls are also responsible for losing a third of the heat. Cavity wall insulation isn’t cheap, but in the long-term, you should save £150+ on your heating bills. 
 
Many energy suppliers have insulation schemes running, and offer cheaper, or even free insulation. So get in touch with your energy supplier! 
 
Insulated water tanks tend to save about £150 a year on bills. It keeps your water for longer and reduces costs so what are you waiting for? If your tank has a “jacket” already, it is definitely worth upgrading. 
 
 
 
Get a Sausage Dog (draught extractor) 
 
Did you know that you an save £25 a year just by plugging gaps? Well you can. Draught excluders are cheap and effective, and so are many DIY products on the market. Self-adhesive rubber seals to go around your doors and windows are a great, and very easy way to keep the heat in. Get them sealed up before winter gets hits its stride
 
 
 
 
Thermo Radiator Valves 
 
Thermostatic radiator valves make it possible to program your radiators to come on and turn off at certain times, thus saving you 40% a year on your energy bills. This stops you using energy when you don’t need to.  
 
It’s amazing what you can do with smartphones; take selfies, order McDonald's, use it as a spirit level, and even make the occasional phone call! Another thing you can do is get a smart thermostat which can be controlled from your phone, so the house can warm up while you’re stuck in traffic (but please pull over before using your phone 😊) 
 
 
 
 
Radiator Reflector Panels 
 
 
Last but not least; radiator refelctor panels are a thing, and they’re cheap. The whole idea is to reflect the heat back into the room so that the walls aren’t the only thing benefitting from the heat. They’re also very easy to install so you should have no problems and will feel the benefits in no time! 
 
 
 
That should keep ol' Jack Frost at bay for another year!  
 
 
 
Tagged as: money, tenants, utilities, winter
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