As temperatures start to creep downwards, many people will reach for the thermostat in a bid to stay warm and ward off the risk of frozen pipes. But there are plenty of other ways to ensure your home stays snug and safe over the colder winter months. Stevenson Heating shares its top seven tips to help you stay warm, prevent plumbing problems and save on your heating bills this winter.
- Keep it Closed
Drawing your curtains closed in the evenings is one of the easiest ways to keep the warm air in and the cold air out. Check there are no gaps in the curtains to ensure they are as effective as possible. Keeping internal doors closed and windows shut will also help to keep the heat in each room.
- Clear the Radiators
Blocking the radiators with furniture and laundry means the heat goes into drying your clothes or the back of the sofa instead of warming your home. Make sure all radiators are free from items that could absorb heat that is meant for you. Also check that your radiators are heating to the top. If not, grab a radiator key and bleed each radiator to release air that has built up inside.
- Insulate, Insulate
If you insulate your home correctly, rooms will warm up more quickly and stay warmer for longer. This keeps everybody warm and saves on the heating bills. Insulating your loft is the number one place to start as you lose around 25% of heat through your roof. If you have a hot water tank, insulating it will keep the water warm for longer.
- Timing’s Everything
Using timers and thermostats mean that you only heat the home when you need to. Many people believe that leaving the heating on a constant low temperature is more energy efficient. This is not so as it means your house is being heated when no one’s home and is not warm enough when they are.
- Protect your Pipes
Keeping your home warm is the best way to prevent frozen and burst pipes. Fix dripping taps as they can be first to freeze when the temperature falls. And, just in case the worst does happen, make sure you know where to turn off the water supply. The internal stopcock is usually located under the kitchen sink, but is sometimes found elsewhere, such as in the hallway.
- Going Away
Going away for a few days can mean your home is at much greater risk of frozen or burst pipes if the temperature dips so follow our tip above to ensure your pipes are protected. While you’re away, you can either leave the heating on a low setting or set the timer. If you’re away for a longer period, it may be a good idea to shut off and drain the water system. Your pipes can’t freeze if there’s no water in them!
- Think Safety
Have the boiler and central heating system serviced at least once a year by a qualified Gas Engineer. Look out for black marks or stains on or around your appliances as this can be a sign something isn’t working properly. A yellow flame in your boiler instead of the usual blue one should also be investigated. Fitting an audible carbon monoxide alarm will give you extra reassurance that everyone is sleeping safe and soundly at night.
Stevenson’s team of heating and plumbing engineers are available throughout the Christmas period to diagnose and repair boiler problems. Call 020 8462 8822 to arrange a call out.
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