Winter is coming! As we say goodbye to those sunny days and BBQs, your thoughts may be drifting straight to Christmas but before you pull out your tree, you should ask yourself, is my house ready for winter? Frigid wind, arctic temperatures, and the dreaded black ice are coming. So why not be prepared and winterize your home?
There are other benefits to winterizing your home too, you can reduce your carbon footprint, save money, and stay cosy all winter by reducing your heating bill. So, what are you waiting for? Follow our guide below to prep your home for winter!
Bleed Your Radiators
You can have the best heating system in the world, but if your house isn’t insulated properly, you’re wasting money. You should check that your radiators are heating to the top. If they aren’t, the chances are you will likely need to bleed your radiators. Bleeding a radiator is all about releasing the trapped air at the top, which is stopping the hot water from rising. Simply use a radiator bleed key (you can buy these at any DIY shop) to open the little valve at the top. You’ll hear air hissing, and as soon as you see a drip of water, close it up again. Sorted. Energy-efficient radiators and warmth! Consult a heating specialist early on for any bigger issues.
Retain Your Heat
A little DIY trick to winterize your home and keeping even warmer is to cover a thin sheet of card with tinfoil and place it behind your radiators. It will reflect the heat back into your rooms, meaning they warm up faster and retain more heat. If DIY isn’t your thing, you can also buy readymade foil insulation to do the same job!
This one is super simple but very effective; if your home has a draught, patch it up. Filling in the gaps around windows and doors can help you save on your heating. This can easily be done by picking up some window draught excluder (an insulating tape) and ensuring it sits flat and snug to your windows.
Many people also have draughts under their doors. This is also easily fixed and a little trick we like is using any spare foam pipe lagging as an excluder; just cut a section to fit the bottom of your door to form a tight seal against the floor. Of course, if you prefer something more decorative, there are plenty of quirky draught excluders available to buy.
Insulate Your Loft
The most effective way to insulate your home is through your loft. The minimum insulation should be between 10 and 14 inches deep. With proper insulation, you can avoid the heated air below rising into your attic.
Fill in your cracks
Using a high-quality caulk or sealant in your cracks and crevices can help you to keep your winterize your home, keep it warm, and stop the hot air from escaping. You can look for these cracks around your windows and doors. You could also caulk all ceiling penetrations such as holes around pipes, ducts, and wires.
Maintain Your Temperature
When it suddenly feels colder, the temptation is to turn up the thermostat all the way up, but what temperature should your house be? The consensus is to aim to set your main room thermostat somewhere between 18°C and 21°C. It’s also a good idea to set your thermostat to one temperature, then use a timer to control when you need the heating most. This prevents any excess energy waste from leaving the heating on too high, or for too long.
Insulated Blinds or Drapes
To really trap in the heat and bring on that hygge feeling, you can hang insulated blinds or drapes that trap the heat in the room.
Now the temperatures are lowering, it’s time to secure, cover, or store outdoor furniture and tools. WD-40 can be used to lubricate and protect garden furniture from rusting over winter. Simply read our guide on how to prevent rust to learn how to properly rust proof and store your garden furniture and tools.
Clean Your Decking, Shed & Fences
Untreated decking that’s not been cleaned for a while looks unsightly. It’s also a real slip hazard! Don’t allow your decking, shed, or fences to deteriorate over the winter months – clean them now using a jet washer and then treat them appropriately, or call in a specialist.
Insulate Your Hot Water Pipes
You can reduce heat loss, save energy and money by insulating all your hot water pipes. This will reduce pressure on your boiler or water heater. This can be done simply with either foam rubber sleeves or an insulated wrap.