How to be eco-friendly in the home - Oliver Heath, spokesperson for The National Home Improvement Show
Draught excluders around doors, windows and opening such as letter boxes will eliminate cold drafts and help to insulate the house avoiding heat loss and save warm air. This means that less energy is needed to heat the home which could save households £55 per year (Energy Saving Trust). Draft excluders should be placed in the around doors, windows, loft hatches, letter boxes, and even key holes. They can be bought from DIY and hardware stores and make for a satisfying and easy DIY job.
Do you have a disused fireplace? A cheap and effective solution to stop warm air being sucked up the chimney breast and out of the house is a chimney balloon. This device will also prevent draughts coming back down the chimney into the house saving you money on heating your home. Fitting one will make an immediate and noticeable improvement to the warmth of that room and can easily be removed by deflating the balloon if you want to use the fireplace.
Heat recovery ventilation
Good ventilation is essential in moisture heavy rooms such as bathrooms and kitchens, to reduce the build up of damp which can lead to the growth of mould, but can often lead to cold drafts unless the right product is specified. A heat recovery fan can be up to 80 per cent efficient, extracting the warmth from stale air and using this to preheat fresh air being drawn in; helping to reduce moisture and providing warm fresh air. They are continual running but can cost as little as £4 a year to run
Get your windows cleaned every four-six weeks to maximise the amount of light coming into the home. This will maximise natural light and reduce the need to turn on electricity hungry lighting – another energy saver! Giving your windowsills a lick of light reflecting paint will also reflect natural light back into your property reducing the need for artificial light. Thick curtains over windows will also reduce heat loss at night but make sure these are pulled well back in the day and don’t cover radiators.