Consumers urged to seek advice as cold snap begins

Published:  14 January, 2013

HHIC is urging people to seek advice on simple energy-saving measures as the winter weather turns cold.

HHIC’s national energy-efficiency campaign - Hole in the Roof - aims to raise public awareness in how to save energy. The Hole in the Roof website provides simple information in how these changes can be easily achieved. Simple ideas, like reducing the temperature on your thermostat, could help you save hundreds of pounds, while cutting out draughts from doors and windows or fitting reflective foil behind radiators all save money and are good for the environment.

Information available on the Hole in the Roof website can be used to decide what can help with home heating costs and how best to go about making improvements.

BBC DIY SOS’s Charlie Luxton, a supporter of the campaign, said: "My approach to retrofitting the home is to start from the basics and work up, so that it wastes less energy. Start with the fabric of the building, concentrating on making it airtight as heat is lost through air movement of a building and insulate as much as possible. Consumers must address their windows and have them double glazed.

"Forty per cent of energy disappears through walls and so it is important to assess what measure is suitable for the property. The UK's old housing stock needs to remain using a gas boiler, which must be a high efficiency model."

Dr Ros Altmann from Saga, another supporter of the Hole in the Roof campaign, understands that it is vital to be aware of the needs of those struggling to keep warm. "Older people spend more time at home, especially in the winter which means they spend a higher proportion of their income on heating their homes."

Saga joins HHIC and the government by supporting the idea of making older people's homes more energy efficient as it can help them to live more comfortably and in better health.

Roger Webb, HHIC director, said: "We can become complacent when we have some prolonged, mild weather and can delay making changes to older heating systems. Then the cold sets in and our homes are unprepared. Not all changes to save energy are costly and we have some easy energy efficiency tips on our website that will really help people to save money and make our old housing stock less leaky."

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