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Tips on How to Get Your Home Ready for Winter to Lower Bills

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Mars
 Mars
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I received this list of tips to get your home ready for the winter to lower your bills written by Graham Lock from Art Windows & Doors, a double-glazing specialist based in Glasgow. Tip 2 is an interesting one.

 

While we may be in the midst of a heatwave, there are only a few months until winter hits, with the season likely to bring freezing conditions. So- if you haven’t winterised your property, now is an excellent time to do so! Taking these actions will protect your family from the elements, and a properly insulated home can be a great tool to lower your heating costs during the Cost of Living crisis - while adding significant value to your home!

1. Insulate the Property

“Heat is easily lost from your home if you fail to insulate the property adequately. Various areas of the property are prone to heat loss. These can include exterior walls, the roof, doors and windows. Loft insulation is a good place to start, by adding a fleecy base layer and preventing rising heat from evaporating into the atmosphere. Cavity wall insulation is another area to consider, as this area will prevent heat from billowing out of the side of the home. Lag heating pipes to prevent them from freezing during periods of extreme temperatures. These examples of basic insulation will make a huge difference to the heat levels within your home.”

2. Get a New Boiler

“Old and dated boilers are unreliable, expensive to run and prone to breakdowns over the winter months. Fit an A-rated boiler though and not only will this run with greater efficiency over the winter months, it’ll be less temperamental and it could reduce your winter fuel bill by anywhere up to 25%”

3. Have your Central Heating Serviced

“Take care of your central heating now and this should prevent any potential problems as the winter embraces your home. Getting your boiler serviced isn’t a bad idea, you might want to power flush your radiators or give them a bleed, to remove air from the system and reduce the chances of cold spots. Have a heating service now and you reduce the chances of it breaking down as temperatures drop outside.”

4. Update Windows and Doors

“Poorly fitting doors and weather-worn windows are another cause of heat loss within the home. Draughty, single-glazed windows are some of the worst culprits as they offer very little in the way of insulation. Double and triple-glazed options are best. They add a protective barrier as do snug-fitting UPVC or composite doors. Fit them and your home benefits from high levels of thermal efficiency.”

5. Window insulation film

“Window insulation film is easy to find in any hardware store or online. The kits include a plastic shrink film to apply to the indoor window frame with double-sided tape before you heat it with a hair dryer to remove any wrinkles and shrink the film. It’s a cheap and effective method, but your windows will have a cloudy and shrink-wrapped look.”

6. Rubber weather sealing

“Like insulation film, rubber weather sealing is easy to buy online or in hardware stores. All you need to do is cut long strips to fit the dimensions of your windows and then peel and stick the sealing to the frame to close any gaps, eliminating drafts. Rubber sealing is a cheap and effective solution that has a minimal impact on the look of your windows. You can, however, potentially damage paint or leave a sticky residue when removing the seal.”

7. Draft snakes

“Draft snakes are simply fabric tubes that you place under a window sill or door to prevent drafts. You can buy them in a variety of great designs, or you can make your own to fit your windows by sewing a tube of fabric and filling it with dry rice. Whilst this offers you a cheap and easy crafting project, it only prevents a draft from coming from the window sill, still letting out plenty of heating through the rest of the frame and the window itself.”

8. Cellular shades or blinds

“If you want natural light in your home whilst receiving insulation, you may wish to try cellular shades. You can order them to custom-fit your windows in the home and design shops. You can also have them made for doorways. The only problem is that they don’t insulate as well as other options, such as curtains.”

9. Layered curtains

“Using multiple heavy fabrics can provide a decent amount of insulation for your windows. However, you will end up blocking out the majority of natural light. Layering curtains can make your living room interior design look amazing, but you will not be able to see it due to the lack of light. Buying heavy curtains to layer is quite expensive, too. The best investment you can make this winter to save on your heating costs is a new set of windows.”

Buy Bodge Buster – Homeowner Air Source Heat Pump Installation Guide: https://amzn.to/3NVndlU

Follow our sustainability journey at My Home Farm: https://myhomefarm.co.uk


   
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(@heat-pump-newbie)
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Hi @editor @derek-m Have you heard of Q-bot ? It's a little robotic car that drives round under the surface of a suspended timber floor and sprays insulation foam up onto it ! Sounds very cute but is it any good ? 


   
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(@derek-m)
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Posted by: @heat-pump-newbie

Hi @editor @derek-m Have you heard of Q-bot ? It's a little robotic car that drives round under the surface of a suspended timber floor and sprays insulation foam up onto it ! Sounds very cute but is it any good ? 

Hi Newbie,

I would assume that it could be quite good if it is applied correctly. 😀 

Do you have any idea how much it costs?

I have been trying to convince my wife that she needs to go on an extreme diet, so that she can crawl under the floor to improve the insulation. 😎 

Of course I would do so myself, but I suffer from having 'big bones'. 🙄 

 


   
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(@heat-pump-newbie)
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Sounds like she'd be very keen to try a Q-bot then ! 


   
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(@heat-pump-newbie)
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I have more info: the price for insulating the timber floored part of a bungalow (which I'm estimating would be about 60 m sq) is in the region of £5000 - £6000. This would be with minimal disruption and hopefully zero damage to the existing varnished floorboards. To manually lift, insulate under and replace those floorboards, with possible damage etc the estimate would be at least twice that.

Any thoughts ?


   
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(@derek-m)
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@heat-pump-newbie

If that is the actual cost I wonder how they arrive at such a price. A further concern would be if they can avoid spraying any electrical wiring that may be present, since if it is covered with insulation it could overheat if a high current is drawn.

Looks like I will have to encourage my wife to diet harder. 🙄 


   
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Mars
 Mars
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This does look pretty cool, @heat-pump-newbie, especially for those with suspended floors.

I’d still love to have something that could navigate behind the plasterboard and see which areas need to get the insulation bolstered.

Buy Bodge Buster – Homeowner Air Source Heat Pump Installation Guide: https://amzn.to/3NVndlU

Follow our sustainability journey at My Home Farm: https://myhomefarm.co.uk


   
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(@derek-m)
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Posted by: @editor

This does look pretty cool, @heat-pump-newbie, especially for those with suspended floors.

I’d still love to have something that could navigate behind the plasterboard and see which areas need to get the insulation bolstered.

Hi Mars,

Have you thought of hiring an endoscopic camera?

 


   
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Mars
 Mars
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@derek-m, I haven’t. But it’s a good idea, provided I can find strategic spots to get the camera in.

Buy Bodge Buster – Homeowner Air Source Heat Pump Installation Guide: https://amzn.to/3NVndlU

Follow our sustainability journey at My Home Farm: https://myhomefarm.co.uk


   
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(@heat-pump-newbie)
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I got myself a Seek thermal imaging attachment for my iphone in the hope that I'll be able to see any voids in the cavity wall insulation. But it's not been cold enough to test it yet (thankfully).


   
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(@derek-m)
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Posted by: @heat-pump-newbie

I got myself a Seek thermal imaging attachment for my iphone in the hope that I'll be able to see any voids in the cavity wall insulation. But it's not been cold enough to test it yet (thankfully).

Mars,

Did you try your thermal camera on the walls in question?

 


   
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Majordennisbloodnok
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Posted by: @derek-m

Posted by: @heat-pump-newbie

Hi @editor @derek-m Have you heard of Q-bot ? It's a little robotic car that drives round under the surface of a suspended timber floor and sprays insulation foam up onto it ! Sounds very cute but is it any good ? 

...

I have been trying to convince my wife that she needs to go on an extreme diet, so that she can crawl under the floor to improve the insulation. 😎 

...

And you're still married and in possession of all your body parts?

 

105 m2 bungalow in South East England
Mitsubishi Ecodan 8.5 kW air source heat pump
18 x 360W solar panels
1 x 6 kW GroWatt battery and inverter
Raised beds for home-grown veg and chickens for eggs

"Semper in excretia; suus solum profundum variat"


   
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