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Keep the cold out this winter

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HHIC offers some cost-effective and energy-efficient advice to help keep homes warm over the coming months

Winter looks like it will bite hard this year and many people will struggle as the freezing conditions take hold, so it is vital that we keep our home heating in good working order – the heat must be kept inside.  The Heating and Hotwater Industry Council (HHIC) has come up with five cost-saving tips to keep your home in good energy-efficiency order.

Image1You don’t have to use the central heating to heat the entire house. 

Use the thermostat valves on the radiators and keep them low or turned off in rooms that you don’t use such as the guest room, spare bedrooms or study. 

Keep the main rooms you use toasty. 

PenguinBy not having your home insulated, a quarter of your heat is lost through the roof.

Insulating your loft is a simple and effective way to reduce your heating bills and you can even do it yourself.  It should be at least 11 inches thick and you could save up to £150 a year. 

There are grants and offers available to help pay for loft insulation and you can find more information about this on our website at

To check if your house is adequately insulated try the snow test. Compare your rooftop with that of a neighbour.   If your house has no or little snow on the roof then it is poorly insulated because heat is being lost through the roof causing the snow to melt. 

matchLight a match and the rising hot air will draw nearby cooler air into the match flame, indicating a draft. 

When you heat your home, the rising hot air will pull cold air from outside into the house.  It is important to cut down on spaces where cold air could enter your house, like underneath the external door and keyholes.  But remember please be careful when lighting a match. 

Keep the interior doors closed as this closes off natural air passageways so they can’t act as chimneys allowing warm air to escape up through the house. 

To test whether your draft excluders on doors are worn, light a match and blow it out and run the smoke along the inside of the door frame.  

If the smoke blows inward, you have a leak.

curtainsAt night, and especially during the winter or when it is cold, drawing your curtains can retain a considerable amount of heat. 

Properly- fitted curtains can act as great insulation for your windows and reduce heat loss through the glass – particularly large windows and glass doors. 

If your curtains are not retaining the heat in the winter, it is even worth considering investing in a new thicker, heavier set as you are sure to save money on your heating costs in the long run. 

radiatorFor older houses with not much insulation on the outside walls, a good trick to keep the heat from your radiators inside the house is to place heat reflectors behind him. 

You can buy radiator foil which costs about £6.98 for 2.5sq metre or simply use ordinary kitchen foil with the shiny side facing towards the back of the radiator. 

Many vulnerable people will suffer as the cold weather sets in. The low-income, infirm and elderly are most at risk, and it is important that they access the benefits available. 

There are cheaper ways to keep warm in the home, as shown in the tips above.  Although it is not ideal to have just one warm room in the house especially for the elderly, it can be a way of keeping costs down.  

Our website will help consumers find out the best ways to keep warm this winter.   It will also enable people to find out realistic information regarding heating systems.  This easy to navigate website provides impartial advice to the consumer by providing real information to realistic problems.  It does this by providing a heating advice section which uses questions from previous customers with answers from our technical experts.  This means if a customer is experiencing a similar problem, they can find help and a solution promptly.


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