For most of us, improving our heating systems could save us a considerable amount of money. The majority of homes are heated using gas, electricity, LPG or solid fuel, such as wood or coal. Gas is usually the cheapest heating fuel for homes with a connection to the gas network.
Ways to improve the energy efficiency of your heating system:
You could benefit from replacing your boiler, and may be able to get help to pay for it.
If you have an old boiler, then replacing it with a new efficient boiler could reduce your heating bills. Replacing a G rated boiler, for example, will cost around £2,300, but could save you £310 per year*.
|Old boiler rating||Old boiler efficiency||Annual saving*||Annual Carbon Dioxide saving*|
*Source: Energy Saving Trust (2013). Savings calculated for the installation of an A rated condensing gas boiler and heating controls for a typical three bedroom semi-detached home.
If you don’t currently have a gas connection, then you could consider connecting to the gas network, or installing a biomass boiler.
If you receive certain means tested benefits then you may be eligible for assistance with the cost of a new boiler if your current boiler is not working. Otherwise, you could make use of a loan linked to your energy bill savings through the government-backed Green Deal scheme.
Our trained advisors can help you to find out whether you may benefit from a boiler replacement or gas connection and give you some more information about funding options.
Put on extra layers of clothes; several thin layers will keep you warmer than one thicker item • drink regular hot drinks and try to make sure you have at least one hot meal a day • keep as active as possible; even when you are sitting down arm and leg exercises can help your circulation • if you are sitting still for a long period of time, fingerless gloves, thermal socks, a blanket and a hot water bottle will all help to keep you warm.
If you have alternative heating, such as a gas fire or wood burner, use these to warm a room • concentrate on heating the rooms and times of day when you most need to keep warm and well • portable electric heaters can be convenient but may be expensive to run; try to choose the best type of heater for your needs, for example fan heaters are good for fast short bursts of heat, whereas oil-filled radiators take more time to heat up but will keep the whole room warmer for longer • use a hot water bottle or electric blanket while you are sleeping, instead of trying to heat the whole room.
If you have an immersion heater, you can use this to heat your water, but use it sparingly as it can be an expensive option • other self-heating appliances, such as electric showers, washing machines and dishwashers, should still work • alternatively you can use pans on the hob or kettles to boil water for washing.
This can be done at any time but it is particularly important when your heating isn’t working, because it can make your home feel much more comfortable • we have draught-proofing DIY guides on our website or you could contact a Handyperson Service to do this for you• make sure you draw your curtains to help keep heat in and towels or rugs could be used as temporary draught-excluders.
Is your boiler/heating system still covered by a warranty or do you have insurance? If this is the case contact the relevant organisation to see what they can do to help • alternatively, ask a local accredited heating engineer to look at the boiler/heating system to identify whether a repair or replacement is necessary and ask them for a written quote for the work • if your boiler is very old, you may save money in the long run by replacing with a modern, efficient boiler rather than repairing it • if you can’t afford the repair or replacement, then depending on your circumstances, there may be funding that can help you – contact us to find out if you qualify.
Find out about funding or for more advice and information about keeping warm by calling Freephone 0800 804 8601.
Keeping Warm and Well [237 KB]
Keeping Cool and Well [239 KB]