“Were you born in a barn?” is a phrase that everyone will have heard growing up. While it may be a slightly sarcastic way our parents teach us to keep doors closed, when you grow up and realize how much heating can cost, you might want to phone your parents up and thank them.
Because home heating is, to a large extent, a rather old school way of heating your home, it used to be that the advice people would give for improving heating indoors always revolved around the same strung-out advice; have a draught excluder, keep the heating on low all day (a BIG no-no by the way), pull curtains over as soon as it gets dark, etc.
While there’s nothing wrong with most of this advice, and it can help with minimizing heat loss, the old school ways we heat is being optimized for the 21st century home. When we can turn lights and heat on by talking to a smart speaker, what other measures can we take to improve home heating, especially if we want the heating to act more efficiently? Here are the hidden ways to improve home heating that are cost-effective and easier than you think.
Tackling the all-day debate
Let’s start by tackling the hottest debate (no pun intended) in home heating efficiency; whether or not having your home heating on all day is the way to go. Some swear by it. Others decry such a notion. Now that many of us are working from home, it may seem like having it all day on is the best way to go, which is right?
The answer is that they both are. Yes, you may be shocked by that, but the simple fact is that your heating should be on when you need it, so if you’re somewhere that is cold all day, the heating needs to be on all day. If you’re only in a room for a short period, the heating needs to be on for a short period.
A poor analogy I use revolves around making dinner. If you throw everything in a slow cooker and set it to low, it will cook perfectly. If you only have half an hour and throw everything in a hot pan, it will also cook perfectly. The efficiency of the length of time should only come under question when you know how much time you have.
If you’re still arguing over what to do, just set the thermostat as low as it can go and work from there. And if that doesn’t work, lean on to tech solutions and get a smart valve installed which you can control wily-nilly from your phone.
Finding inefficient radiators with a pension
Are you reading this at home right now? Do me a favor and take a good hard look at your radiator. It might be one you purchased or was already in the house when you moved in. Do you know how long it has been there? We tend to avoid paying much attention to radiators unless we notice something is wrong even though they perform quite an arduous task of heating your entire home every day.
So how do you know if a radiator is inefficient without cracking it open (please never do that)? A simple diagnosis is the age test. Older radiators become less efficient as they begin to rust a little inside from oxidation. Even if you don’t feel cold patches, it can happen. You might be surprised to learn that the average lifespan for a domestic radiator is around ten years. Now a radiator can keep going for years to come, but it is a benchmark for acknowledging why a radiator might be on the way out.
On the off chance, your radiators are at their pension age, and you think it might be time for an update, I recommend visiting Trade Radiators here for a good deal on a new radiator. Remember, newer radiators are constructed to act efficiently, which usually sees them needing less water to heat and faster heating times.
Hitting your mark
How can an inefficient radiator ever be efficient? When heating isn’t its fault.
Do you have that room at home that always has a chill even when the radiator is cranked up full? Well, it is most likely the room that is to blame and not the radiator. So many homes have radiators installed which don’t meet heating requirements for the size of the room. Going online and finding a heating calculator is the quickest way to learn if your radiator is working overtime in a room where you probably should have another radiator on the go.
Get to know what rooms need from heating, rather than expecting quick results anytime heating is on, and you’ll be surprised with how efficient things can get.
Thanks for reading. Don’t forget; if you want to have a more efficient home, look at our latest building & features articles for advice and tips.