Top tips to help keep your heating running happily

A well cared for central heating system will help keep your home warm and cosy. And looking after it isn’t difficult at all. Here are six ways to protect your home in the colder months – this video shows you how easy they are.

Pipe lagging keeps the heat flowing

When the temperature drops, pipes can freeze. Not only does this stop your central heating working properly, it can mean replacing burst pipes. The simple solution is pipe lagging. You can buy ready-made lagging that slips on in minutes, yet gives years of protection.

Check your radiators

A common problem that makes your home feel cold is air trapped in the radiators. The air pockets prevent the heated water circulating. Remember to check your radiators regularly for cold patches and, if there are any, bleed them. If you can’t find the key, most DIY shops sell them for around £1.

Keep an eye on the boiler pressure

To keep your boiler running at maximum efficiency, the pressure needs to be just right. This is easy to do – simply check the meter on your boiler and make sure it’s set between 1 and 1.5 bar. If it needs adjusting, this video shows you how to check the water pressure.

Watch the pilot light

If you have a gas boiler, it’s important to keep an eye on the colour of your pilot light. When everything is running well, the light is a strong blue. A yellow flame could mean your boiler needs servicing as it could potentially be releasing carbon monoxide. An annual boiler service will help you get the best performance out of your boiler and remember to always call a Gas Safe Registered Engineer.

Make sure you're safe

Smoke and carbon monoxide are lethal – and silent. That’s why it’s vital you put both smoke and carbon monoxide alarms in your home. You can buy these as separate or combined alarms. At around £20 to £25, it’s a small price to pay.

Set your boiler to suit you

To help your boiler run more efficiently, set it to fit in with your daily routine – plenty of heat and hot water first thing in the morning and evening, and the heat turned down or off when you’re out. By using the timer and thermostat on your boiler to set heat and water to come on and off at different times and different temperatures, you’ll cut your energy use and bills.