Gloucestershire Echo - - YOUR MONEY -

FEEL­ING the chill? Thank­fully, there are some ways you can pro­tect and pre­pare your home for harsh weather – sav­ing money while you’re at it. Vin­cent Re­boul, man­ag­ing di­rec­tor of Hi­tachi Per­sonal Fi­nance, says: “It’s worth per­form­ing a health check on your home.”

Here are some tips from Hi­tachi Per­sonal Fi­nance...

1. In­su­late your home: Fit­ting in­su­la­tion can of­ten bring en­ergy bills down by a con­sid­er­able amount. It can pay to do the re­search and see whether there are any schemes avail­able to you which could save you some cash.

2. Pro­tect your pipes: Faulty or burst pipes of­ten end in ma­jor water dam­age. En­sure water tank pipes are prop­erly in­su­lated so they aren’t at risk of freez­ing. Also, keep an eye on leaky taps, as even a small drip can turn into a ma­jor leak in the win­ter.

3. Clean the drains and gut­ters: Check gut­ter­ing and drain­pipes reg­u­larly. In­sur­ance com­pa­nies may not cover water dam­age if it could have been avoided by reg­u­lar main­te­nance.

4. Check your boiler: A boiler break­down is a mis­er­able ex­pe­ri­ence. An ef­fi­cient and well-main­tained boiler can help to save money on heat­ing bills too. 5. Make sure you’re cov­ered: Proper in­sur­ance will pro­vide valu­able peace of mind through­out the win­ter months.

6. Com­pate en­ergy prices:

Go through a few com­par­i­son sites to see which of­fers are best suited to your needs. This can of­ten lead to sub­stan­tial sav­ings on house­hold bills in the long-run.

7. Bleed ra­di­a­tors: Bleed­ing the ra­di­a­tors is a job many peo­ple over­look.

When air is trapped in a ra­di­a­tor it pre­vents it from heat­ing up prop­erly, mean­ing you need to turn up the tem­per­a­ture, and in turn the heat­ing bills also rise.

If you can hear clunk­ing in your ra­di­a­tors, then it may be time to bleed them. You may also want to con­sider buy­ing ra­di­a­tor in­su­la­tion wall pan­els to re­flect heat back into your home rather than be­ing lost through the walls and win­dows.

Take ac­tion if ra­di­a­tors are noisy

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