Smart Energy shares tips for reducing energy bills
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After the UK experienced a mild autumn, freezing temperatures are now soaring the UK. Overnight lows of -10C are predicted in northern Scotland with snow and ice warnings there, in Wales, Northern Ireland, and the east coast. However, the rising cost of energy means many may resist using their heating, even during the extremely cold weather expected this week.
Living in low temperatures puts a strain on the body, as well as posing potential issues such as damp and mould growing in areas.
David Miloshev, Certified Electrician from Fantastic Services, said: “There are a surprising amount of clever little tricks you can use to keep yourself warmer and your bills lower. I’ve gathered some of the best ones for you to bear in mind.”
This included making use of curtains and blinds, it doesn’t use any electricity but may make a huge difference.
The expert said: “Keep your blinds and curtains open during the hours of the day when the sun is shining towards your windows and close them when it starts to set.
“By letting the rays of sunshine into your home, you are taking advantage of the free solar heat. Closing the curtains and blinds afterwards helps create a good insulating layer and lets you keep that free warmth you’ve gathered throughout the day.”
The thicker the curtains, the more they will stop heat from escaping, especially if you have draughty or particularly old windows.
According to Safe Style Windows, around 18 percent of the total heat within a house is lost through the windows. This is caused by radiation, through glazing, convection and conducted through the window frame.
Hillarys experts said curtains can reduce heat loss by up to 41 percent in a single glazed window. Households could also manage heat loss by layering curtains over blinds or shutters so if you have this combination, make sure they are both closed during the day.
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Hillarys experts added: “On days when it’s freezing cold or really hot, keep them closed for maximum impact. If you’ve a radiator fitted under a window, we recommend combining your curtains with a blind.
“Open the curtains while the blind is closed to keep draughts at bay without blocking the heat from your radiator.”
Households can also cover draughts around the window frame as well as around doors. David said the cold draughts could steal “priceless” heat before you know it.
The electrician added: “Consider draught stoppers for your doors and windows to help solve the issue. Any other openings to the outside world might also be causing draughts – dryer vents, electrical work, oven vents, and even keyholes and outlets can be draught-causing culprits.
“Use keyhole and outlet covers or insulators, and make sure any other openings are well-sealed with caulking.”
Winter air is often very dry, especially indoors and the seasonal change can cause chapped lips and dry skin due to the moisture from your skin being sucked out.
David said: “Not only do we feel colder in dry air, but adding some moisture will actually allow your indoor air to retain the heat longer. Some easy ways to increase the humidity include having well-watered houseplants, bringing your laundry to dry indoors (bonus savings for not using the dryer!), and placing shallow water containers on heating elements such as radiators.
“It also helps to open the door after showering and letting that warm, humid air flow around your home.”
High energy bills can be scary, but staying cold is also a risk. The expert said if you’re living and sleeping in a cold home, you are increasing the chances of suffering from a plethora of illnesses.
David noted: “Your mental health may also suffer if you cannot get enough sleep. People with existing health problems and specific disabilities are particularly susceptible to the cold. As we said before, the recommended temperature to keep your home is between 18C and 21C.
“Anything below this for sustained periods of time will ultimately put your health at risk. If you’re worried that you won’t be able to afford to stay warm this winter, you might actually be eligible to receive aid.
“Depending on your circumstances, you may get the Winter Fuel or Cold Weather Payments automatically.”
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