With the recent rise of the new energy price cap, homeowners up and down the country are looking for ways of staying warm without hurting the bank. Identifying cost effective ways to keeping the warm in and the cold out is essential in ensuring you and your family remain cosy within your home whilst still having the disposable income to be able to do what you love. It can be so tempting to turn the heating or fireplace on as soon as you feel a cold breeze, but with plenty of savvy options out there, it’s time to stop being lazy and start being innovative. As every home is different and has different needs, you want to personalise it to your space and ensure your methods are effective and work with your style. Of course, burrowing under a blanket or doing a workout will get you toasty, but how can you keep your home warm this winter?
Battle Your Habits
For many, it can be so tempting to put the heating to combat the cold just purely down to convenience and ease. The first thing you should consider is whether your home needs it. Maybe you’re in a particularly chilly part of your home or have just got in from the outside. Having a bit of patience or clever thinking can massively impact on whether it’s your home that’s cold or just yourself. This is especially prevalent when the warm weather is substituted for more brisk temperatures and your body is still in summer mode.
This might seem a bit redundant, but where your sofa, tables, and all other furniture sit within your home can have a massive impact as to how warm it is. Even if it’s just slightly, you don’t want furniture to cover any radiators as it will stop the heat from properly travelling throughout the room. You want to avoid placing seated furniture by external walls as there will be a noticeable chill in comparison to internal walls. You might even need to consider whether you have enough furniture within each space as empty rooms are notoriously colder. Furniture is great at absorbing the heat and then re-radiating it into the air and making it a warmer place to be in.
Bleed Your Radiator
It is a good idea to constantly check your radiator for cold spots as that might be a sign that it needs bleeding. Don’t worry, it doesn’t mean real blood, but instead it is a way of ensuring your warm water is circulating properly. Keep checking your radiator for cold patches as this is a sign that air has become trapped inside your heating system. It should only take approximately 30 seconds each time you bleed your radiator and should be completed at least once a year, if not twice to make sure your heating system remains efficient.
Illumination Is Essential
It might not sound like the most important thing or the solution that will warm you to the core, but the lighting in your home is pivotal in ensuring you have a cosy space. When the nights are getting darker, keeping your curtains open is not only pointless, but closing them helps to keep the warm in. In the height of winter, the sun sets at around 4PM, so this is approximately when you want to think about closing them. Once this is done, you have a dark space that requires illumination so you can see what you’re doing, but also control the mood for the rest of the room.
You’re not short of options when it comes to how to brighten your home with the use of bulbs, it’s just about choosing the best option for you with an attention on warmth. You want to first assess what lights you have in each room, what the space is for, and if they match up. Obviously, you want to have brighter hues in the kitchen compared to your living room or bedroom, but for the areas where the focus is on cosy, it is essential that you get it right. String lights give your home an exquisite bohemian feel that can be placed practically anywhere and bring a homely vibe. The type of bulb you use can play a big part in how much energy is consumed, with most light fixtures allowing you to change at any point. Halogen bulbs produce a lot of heat, which on the face of it might seem like a good way to keep your home warm, but it can be dangerous to touch and use a lot of energy. Comparing both halogen and LED bulbs is an excellent way of understanding what works best for different parts of your home.
Ideally you want to change your halogen bulbs to LED as it is more energy and cost efficient for your home. In addition to this they are 100% recyclable so you’re helping save the planet at the same time.
With a large selection of LED bulb styles that is ever expanding, you can get the right fit for your light fixture, interior style, and personal preference.
Cost: £2.00 -£15.00 per light bulb
You might be wondering how a shelf can help keep your house warm, but if you’re clever about it, there’s a massive undiscovered benefit to be had. Fitting a floating shelf above your radiator is an excellent way of dispersing the heat around your home rather than just letting the heat rise to the ceiling. Acting as a shield, this is a stylish way of giving extra heat to areas that might be lacking in warmth. The ideal place for this is impacted due to where your radiators are located, with your hallway and living room both being great suiters. Of course, you can buy a brand-new shelf, but if you already have one within your home that isn’t in the most effective position, then simply move that one. Furthermore, you can upholster a bit of spare wood for your shelf, saving you money and giving yourself an exciting project.
Block Out the Breeze
It goes without saying but having a breeze within your home is going to lower your chances of staying warm. It might just be the most obvious thing ever, but keeping doors and windows closed as much as possible will keep the cold at bay and hold the warm in. Even if you do this, it isn’t unusual to experience a chilly airflow throughout your home especially if people are coming in and out of your home. The best way of combat this is with a draught excluder, keeping the cold out of a particular room. it has been shown that draught excluders are able to reduce heat loss by up to 30%, and with plenty of unique designs out there, you can’t go wrong.
Regardless of the temperature, it is a good idea to include soft, plush textures throughout your home. This is especially relevant during the winter months when the aim is to stay warm. The chances are that you already own a lot of these suggestions within your home already, but if not, they’re inexpensive purchases.
Rugs are an essential part of any room with hardwood flooring, giving you a soft, comfy place to walk on. As well as giving your feet a nice material to step on, they can also prevent warm air from escaping between planks which keeps the heat where it matters most. There is a massive range of sizes, styles and thickness to suit your rooms needs and aesthetic, so finding one for you shouldn’t be difficult.
Cost: Smaller Rugs £25.00-£60.00 and larger rugs - £50+
Wrap Yourself Up
When you feel a shiver and look for the heating, take a minute to think about what you can do personally to make yourself warm. Blankets and throws are an excellent way of doing this and can be spread across multiple people. This makes them ideal for snuggling up with your loved one during the evening. Of course, you could wrap a throw around yourself, but it isn’t the most practical when moving around your home. Putting on extra layers of clothing is a simple, effective, and free way of staying toasty. Think thick fleeces or jumpers, doubling up on socks, and long-sleeved shirts. You could also pick up a hot water bottle if your home is particularly cold to give you instant warmth. These are largely inexpensive purchases that are incredibly effective at providing heat and can be transported throughout the home.
Cost: for a blanket or throw: £10.00-£40.00/hot water bottle: £5.00-£20.00
We all know that feeling of when you’re getting out of a hot shower or bath and can feel the goose bumps emerging instantly. Picking up a thick towel or bath sheet can massively help the speed of which you dry yourself, allowing you to put your clothes on quickly. Furthermore, it helps to find a quick drying towel as it prevents you from using the tumble dryer, radiator, or other heating appliance, getting your towel to a useable condition within no time, spending no money in the process.
Staying warm without spending an excess of money is a battle many of us are currently having to fight. It’s sometime best to take a step back and analyse what you have at your disposal and work with it. A lot of the time, this can prove to be just as, if not more effective than methods where you end up spending money. Of course, there might be some gaps within your home that require a purchase or two, but nothing that should leave a big hole in your bank account.