When the colder weather starts to hit, you need to do more than just dig out your winter clothes – it’s also important to check that your heating system is shipshape. Even if the seasons are still changing, you need to make sure that the temperatures in your own four walls are right for you – so we’ve given you a few suggestions to keep your home warm and cosy, no matter the time of year.
Make sure you perform maintenance on the radiators – preferably before the heating season, but no later than the start of it. This is essential for ensuring that you’ll get the most out of the heat energy being generated. That gurgling sound radiators make is largely caused by air bubbles in the hot water, which prevent optimum circulation and therefore the best possible heat output.
To stop this happening, simply bleed your radiators with a bleed key (available in any DIY store), a cup and a cloth. If you need help with bleeding your radiators, get in touch with an experienced heating engineer and they’ll be happy to help you.
Did you know that you should never turn your radiators off completely during the heating season? Once the room has cooled down, it takes significantly more energy to heat it up again. That’s why you should make sure the temperature in your house doesn’t drop below 18 degrees when you’re out. You can easily control this using a room thermostat. Just set the temperatures for each weekday and for specific time periods, and the thermostat will then simply adapt itself as necessary. Some modern control systems are even able to access weather forecasts on the Internet and ensure the heating matches the conditions. If the forecast predicts sunny weather, the rooms are not heated in advance and they are never heated up too much. This makes it possible to save energy in an environmentally conscious and cost-conscious way, while still enjoying supreme comfort.
Radiators are often obscured by pieces of furniture, curtains and other everyday objects. This leads to a build-up of heat, preventing it from dissipating evenly throughout the room and resulting in higher heating costs. Leaving a distance of at least 15 to 20 centimetres will keep the heat output at the ideal level – generally, only a few simple adjustments are needed to create enough space. This ensures all the energy is used efficiently.
Keeping the heating permanently on reduces the level of humidity in the air and leads to an unpleasantly dry atmosphere. This dries out our mucous membranes, making us more susceptible to falling ill. Dry air also feels colder than air with the right level of humidity.
A tool called a hygrometer, which can be bought at any DIY store, measures the air humidity in the room – this should be between 40 and 60 percent. If the level is too low, simply place a container of water near the heating system. The system will incorporate the water and generate warm air that is also humid.
Remember to keep an eye on the hygrometer to ensure a balanced atmosphere – if the air becomes too humid, it will take longer to heat up and will use more energy. If you are building a new house, we recommend integrating a controlled room ventilation system. This regulates the temperature and the air humidity automatically.
It’s a good idea to have a professional check your heating system regularly. They will check the insulation around the heating pipes, the entire heating system and the controls, replacing old or broken components if required, to make sure your system is properly equipped for the next heating season.
- Bleed the radiators and perform maintenance on them
- Never turn the radiators off completely
- Leave space around the radiators
- Maintain the right level of air humidity
- Get your heating system checked by a professional