Low-tech ways to keep your home warm this winter

The cost of keeping British homes warm is a scandal. Even though the government is trying to restrain greedy power companies, years of poor planning make significant improvements unlikely in the years to come.

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Although we are advised to install double glazing, insulation, and more efficient boilers, most subsidy schemes were changed to loans before being scrapped altogether. What can we do to keep warm?

Radiators

Lining the wall behind radiators with metal foil throws wasted heat back into the room. You can buy foil designed for this purpose from hardware stores, but kitchen foil is better than nothing. Fitting shelves above the radiators does the same for warm air, preventing it from escaping through cold windows.

Curtains

Fit thick curtains and draw them all at night. Adding heavy liners is a cheaper alternative. Curtains also help when fitted over doors and across hallways.

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Sunshine

Make full use of winter sunlight. Pull back the curtains early and avoid obstructing the sunlight with net curtains, objects on the sill, or by using dark paint.

Secondary glazing

A cheaper fix for draughty windows is to install additional glazing inside of them. Professionals like Gloucester double glazing firm https://www.firmfix.co.uk/ also fit secondary glazing.

Chimneys

Today, fires in the fireplace are usually illegal. Stop losing heat through unused chimneys by ensuring they are sealed. Many already have adjustable flues.

Cat flaps

Spoil your cats with a draughty cat flap and they will never learn to clamber up the side of the house!

Draft excluders

Granny’s patchwork snake is more useful as a knitting project than for home improvement. If you’re fighting to keep one room warm in a cold house, you’re already losing the battle.

Heaters

Placing an armchair in front of a heater blocks it from heating the whole room – until it sets fire!

Unused rooms

Simply closing doors makes an enormous improvement. Remember to switch off their radiators, too.

Floors

Ten per cent of a room’s heat is lost through bare wooden floors. Thick carpet always feels warmer than modern flooring tiles.

Loft insulation

A good seal on your loft hatch is very important, and insulation is fairly cheap if you lay it yourself.

Thermostats

Warm the house before you get up by setting it earlier rather than hotter, and switch it off an hour before bed.