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Heating your home advice

Heating your home can be expensive and, if not done properly, can be a waste of energy and money. An efficient heating system that you can control easily can help reduce your fuel bills and use less energy. These simple measures will help you be more energy efficient when you are heating your home.

Get the best out your home heating

There are a few things you can do right now to make heating your home more energy efficient, saving yourself money on your fuel bills.

Insulate your home

According to the Energy Saving Trust, the average household spends £1,300 a year on gas and electricity. A detached home could save more than £500 a year with better insulation. Double glazing improvements and expensive cavity wall insulation can all lead to a more energy efficient home. But one of the biggest savings can be made by making sure you have at least 27cm thick loft insulation in the attic as this can knock approximately £200-£500 (depending on the size of your home) off your annual energy bill.

In the first instance, simply insulating where drafts are coming in – the letterbox and cat flap using a brush draft excluder– will also help keep you warm and save energy. DIY draft excluding foam strips stuck around windows and doors offer a quick fix. And heavy curtains closed against the cold night will act as insulation.

See our guide for more advice on how to make your home more energy efficient.

Go hi-tech and let gadgets control your heating

Besides fitting individual radiator thermostat valves that allow you to make sure radiators are only switched on when they’re needed, you can install state-of-the-art devices that make this kind of energy-saving and cost-cutting even easier.

One example is British Gas’s Hive Active Heating. It connects a wireless thermostat to the internet to allow you to program your heating and hot water by text message or from any smartphone or tablet. And, you don’t have to upgrade your boiler. It won’t save you oodles of cash, as it’s essentially a thermostat upgrade, but it will allow you to use energy more efficiently. For example, it’s geolocation function allows you to program your heating to come on when you get close to home.

Make sure your boiler’s in good shape

There’s no point investing in the latest technology if you’re boiler’s on its last legs. Get it serviced regularly – emergency repairs can cost a fortune, and servicing will catch problems before they occur.

Most boilers last for around 10 years.  Then they start to become inefficient and waste gas as well as money.

Get your radiators and pipework working more efficiently

Make sure there aren’t any cold spots, which are caused by build up of debris in radiators.  You can fix these with a “Powerflush” using a chemical solution that breaks down the build up. It costs around £500.

You can also have a Magnaclean installed to prevent the pipes from becoming blocked again. This should cost around £200 on top of the cost of a new boiler.

You can find a plumber to service your heating system using our Checkatrade tool.

Shop around for the cheapest energy provider

  • While generally the advice is to check your energy deal every year, now isn’t the time to switch energy providers.

For advice on how to save money on your energy bills, see our top 10 energy saving tips.

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