Keep warm this winter

Chilly January is well and truly underway, but could we be keeping ourselves warmer and therefore happier in our homes – and also saving energy at the same time?

Many householders could make their homes more comfortable and reduce their bills at this time of year with just a few simple steps.

*Bleed your radiators by reducing the air trapped at the top, which stops them filling completely with hot water. This can be done with a cheap radiator key.

*Try covering a thin sheet of card with tinfoil and sliding it between the wall and the radiator – it will reflect the heat back into the room, helping to warm the space up faster.

*Move furniture away from in front of radiators to allow the heat to circulate round the room.

*During the day, keep blinds and curtains open to make the most of any thermal gain from sunshine streaming in.

*As soon as the light fades, close blinds and curtains to keep the heat in. Thick curtains can make a lot of difference.

*Place rugs on hard floors to cover up draughty floorboards, prevent heat loss and keep your feet feeling warmer.

*Close doors and turn off radiators in rooms that are not being used.

*After cooking dinner and switching the over off, leave the door open slightly to let the heat out into your kitchen – be sure to keep children and animals away, however.

*Use your heating timer effectively to make sure you are not heating the house when you don’t need, as well as to ensure you have enough heat at other time.

*Check the temperature in your home regularly – try to set your thermostat between 18 deg C and 21 deg C.