Icy window

As winter draws in and you start to think about turning your heating on, use these top tips to keep the warm in and the cold out. These simple tips will drastically reduce the heat your home loses and will help you save money on your winter heating bills. After all, you don’t need to be reminded that energy prices are escalating!

Windows

Did you know, a single pane of glass can lose almost 10 times as much heat as the same area of insulated wall? If your home has sash windows and you want to maintain their character as well as keeping warm, you may want to consider adding a bespoke secondary glazing. This will copy the window’s structural line and can prevent heat loss by up to 70%. You could also replace the original thin glass with thicker glass to prevent heat loss. If that sounds like too much hard work, make sure you have thick curtains to keep the cold out.

Insulation

Top rate insulation is the ideal way to lower heating bills. Newer homes generally are better insulated than older homes. If you live in a period property, now is therefore the time to sort your insulation out, before the winter chill really sets in. If you have cavity walls in your property check whether cavity wall insulation has been fitted. It is a good idea to have insulation professionally installed to avoid moisture-related and air quality problems but remember to wear a facemask, goggles and protective clothing if you chose to do it yourself.

Secure your loft

If you have a loft, check it is insulated. You should also check whether the insulation itself is thick enough. Rolls of foam insulation are cheap and three rolls of 8in deep foam should be enough to give most lofts an important layer of protection. You should also check that loft hatch is airtight. Loft hatch insulation kits are available from DIY stores.

Insulation

Maximise your radiators

A very simple way to prevent needless heat loss from radiators, particularly on those attached to external walls, is to use heat reflective aluminium foil behind each radiator. This will prevent heat disappearing through the wall by reflecting it back into the room. You should also try and avoid placing large pieces of furniture in front of them. The sofa parked by the radiator is absorbing lots of heat.

Cover bare floors

According to the National Energy Foundation, floors account for as much as 10% of heat loss if they're not insulated. Use it as an excuse to treat your home to a new rug or carpet and keep cosy this winter.

Chimney balloon

If your fireplace is only decorative, you might want to think about using a chimney balloon to limit heat being lost up the chimney. The balloons are made from a special laminate and can be bought from DIY shops from £20. They can be placed inside the chimney hole and inflated to block incoming cold air, and therefore keep room heat in.