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5 ways to keep your house warmer this winter (and what they'll cost)

Winter is coming…

WHETHER YOU LIKE it or not, winter is coming, but there are benefits to colder times. Who doesn’t like cosying up in front of a roaring fire?

However, nobody wants to spend all their money on heating bills, so to help you out we spoke to energy-efficiency expert Martin Cooney of Irish Energy Assessors to get his top tips for making your home as warm and cosy as possible over the winter.

Snuggle up…

1. Around €40… Lagging jackets and thermostats

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The quickest, most cost-effective and efficient way to make a dent in your heating bills is to lag your immersion tank. Not having one is like going outside without a jacket: it just doesn’t make sense. A lagging jacket will set you back around €40 or so, but you’ll reap the rewards immediately.

Additionally, Martin recommends installing a thermostat to turn off the immersion when it reaches temperature:

Having a hot water tank without a thermostat is like having a kettle without an off switch.

2. Around €50… Circulating pumps

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Another low-cost way to save on heating costs is separating your water heating from your central heating. Believe it or not, if they’re not separated, even if you turn the radiators off at the valve the pipes under the floor will still be sending hot water around the house.

An easy fix is to add a circulating pump which will separate the two. The pump itself will be about €35 and then you’ll have the labour costs of a plumber on top of that.

3. Around €200… Lining curtains and adding rugs

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Soft furnishings were originally developed as a way to keep rooms warmer – and they still work today!

Closing your curtains at night helps keep the heat in, and if you want to be extra fancy (and cosy), you can line them too. Putting rugs down on timber or tiled floors will also help to keep the heat in.

4. Around €500… Draught stripping

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Your windows and doors can be a major source of heat leakage if the rubber seals around them have perished over time, or even if more serious degradation such as plaster crumbling around the openings occurs.

Martin’s main advice for making your home warm and cosy is to draught strip your home. This means replacing the rubber seals around doors and windows and otherwise patching up and making them airtight. Obviously, the cost depends on how many windows and doors you have but aim for a budget around the €500 mark.

5. Around €1000… Attic insulation

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Last but not least, look up. Attic insulation is one of the most important remedies to consider as heat rises – and all your heat will be going through your roof if there’s no insulation up there.

And remember, if you’re investing in roof insulation or other measures to make your home more energy efficient, there are Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI) grants available to help with the costs.

How do you keep your home warm and cosy? Let us know in the comments below.

You can connect to the natural gas network from as little as €250. Natural gas is the fuel of choice for over 647,000 home-owners around the country. Natural gas has many benefits over oil and electricity including cost savings, convenience, versatility, lower emissions and greater efficiency. When choosing a new home or renovating an older one, choose natural gas. Find out more at gasnetworks.ie/choose-gas

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