• Durham OnAir

Top Tips from Alpha Heating as Daylight Saving Time Ends and Winter Nears


With daylight saving time due to end this Sunday 30 October and with the colder months edging closer, it is worthwhile for homeowners to carry out a few basic checks around their properties now and pre-empt any problems further into winter. Darran Smith, technical manager for home heating expert Alpha, shares a simple checklist for homeowners to use and help keep their homes warm and cosy throughout the longer nights and winter season…

“Homeowners are advised to get their boilers serviced once every year, however latest research from the Gas Safe Register reveals that almost one third (31%) of UK homeowners skip their annual gas safety checks. Whilst it might be tempting to forgo this vital check when faced with the impulse to cut households costs, an annual boiler service can actually ensure that your home heating system is operating at its most efficient through the winter months. Just be sure that the inspection is carried out by a qualified gas safe registered engineer.

“Alongside this, homeowners can carry out a few simple checks in and around the home, especially in preparation for the upcoming longer nights. Worryingly, almost two thirds (63%) do not check and replace batteries in their home carbon monoxide detector. Carbon monoxide leaks have been known to cause 40 deaths a year in England and send an additional 4,000 to A&E annually.[1] This is just an example of how important regular safety checks are, not only regarding carbon monoxide detectors, but smoke alarms too

“Inside the home, examine window and door frames to ensure they remain weathertight and use weather stripping or caulking to combat any draughts, cracks or leaks. Check the loft to make sure it is weathertight and top up the insulation where needed. Inspect your entire plumbing system for leaks and insulate any exposed pipes to reduce the risk of them bursting when temperatures dip below zero. Warm air can even escape through your chimney, installing a chimney draught-excluder could save you some extra money on the energy bill this year.

“Outside, visually inspect your roof for damage and clean gutters and downpipes to prevent the build-up of leaves. Make sure windowsills are clear so water will drain away properly and check outside drains for pooling of water or blockages. Consider turning off exterior taps and draining/disconnecting hose pipes when the freezing temperatures set in. And with the nights now drawing in, it’s a good idea to inspect any outside lights to keep pathways safe and visible.

“Finally, there are additional routine tasks you can carry out beyond the boiler service to keep everything within your home heating system running smoothly and efficiently. Bleed radiators and review thermostat settings to save energy and money while keeping the temperature in your most frequently used rooms at a comfortable level.”

For more practical tips to reduce your heating bills, check out Alpha Heating Innovation’s handy online guide.