Are you looking to keep your home green and energy efficient this winter? Sefton Meadows have written this guest post with 7 top eco tips for your winter home.
With winter coming up, it’s the perfect time to have a look at your home to see how you can make it a little greener during the colder months.
As environmental issues continue to grow and gain momentum in the public eye, more people like you are continuing to look inwards and think about what they can do to make their lifestyle more sustainable.
From choosing greener modes of transport, to boycotting foods with plastic packaging, there are a many of ways you can cut down on your carbon-footprint and cause less environmental damage to our planet – but it can be overwhelming to know where to start.
So, if you are looking for ways to sustain a greener way of living over the winter, read the following top tips from Sefton Meadows.
7 Eco Tips For Winter
1. Insulate & cold proof your home
Often, people crank up the heating during the winter because as heat is produced, it is escaping through the roof, walls, and through gaps in doors and windows.
Insulation is the key to trapping heat in your home. The better your insulation, the less energy you need to use to keep your home toasty and warm, even during the coldest weather. As well as keeping energy usage down, having proper insulation will stop your bills over-inflating over the winter months.
To understand the bigger picture, here are some handy heat loss calculators which will calculate the amount of heat being lost from each room in your home.
2. Block draughts
Can you feel a draught? Stop ignoring the occasional breeze you feel when watching TV – now is the time to locate the source of these pesky draughts and block them off for good.
Older houses, especially those without double glazing or with wooden doors, are especially susceptible to draughts. If you can’t afford to replace doors and windows, there are some makeshift solutions:
- Focus on rooms you spend the most time in – think about where you and your family spend the most time and focus on these rooms first.
- Draught excluders – invest in draught excluders to block the gaps underneath your doors. This is a cheap but good solution.
- Curtains – a good set of curtains can stop cold air getting through to your room.
Although draughts may not seem like much of an issue, they mean that cold air is being sucked in, and warm air is spilling out.
Blocking draughts will ensure your heating runs more efficiently – saving energy and money in the long run. Proper draught-proofing measures can save you up to £60 a year, so it’s definitely worth looking into.
3. Turn the heating down
Turning down the heating may seem counter-productive if you’re trying to keep your home warm, but turning your heating down to a lower temperature can help to conserve energy. Putting radiators and water heaters on the highest setting may seem like the fastest, most practical way to heat your home, but hitting the high numbers isn’t usually necessary.
Having a thermostat installed will help you to achieve better efficiency with your heating, and you should aim to heat your home to no higher than 18-21°C during the winter.
4. Prepare your garden
Before the cold temperatures hit, make sure your garden is ready to withstand the winter months.
Looking after your garden tools, furniture and other fixtures will ensure that they last a long time and won’t need to be replaced for years to come. This will lessen your impact on the planet by decreasing your personal demand for manufactured products.
As the temperatures begin to drop, you should:
- Cover garden furniture with tight-fitting, waterproof covers. Store them inside if possible and remove any soft furnishings.
- Ensure tools are cleaned, dried and put away.
- Clear out compost bins and any disused ceramic pots.
- Clean out your water butts if you have them – you may leave them to fill up again over the winter but might want to drop a couple of tennis balls inside to prevent ice.
5. Energy-efficient lightbulbs
Did you know you can use up to 90% less electricity by switching your lightbulbs to energy-efficient models?
Changing old halogen lightbulbs for LED lightbulbs is one of the simplest and smartest energy-saving changes you can make to your home, especially as days grow shorter and nights get longer.
As well as saving energy, modern lightbulbs should also last longer, with the average LED bulb boasting a lifespan of 25,000 hours.
6. Wear more layers
Simple but effective, layering up clothing is the easiest way to get warm fast in the winter.
Always consider putting on another layer before you reach for the thermostat, who knows how much energy you could save?
7. Choose seasonal produce
Buying out of season produce may be tempting, but when you consider that it is probably being grown abroad in sunnier climates and shipped hundreds or thousands of miles to reach your dinner plate, you must decide whether it’s worth it from an environmental perspective.
Help to lessen the demand for out-of-season fruit and vegetables by sticking to locally grown, in-season produce wherever possible.
Crops which are in-season during the winter in the UK include:
- Brussel Sprouts
The impact of choosing seasonal, local produce is significant. It can reduce your carbon footprint by a 10%.
Wrap up on green tips for winter home
Leading a greener lifestyle doesn’t have to be too difficult and time-consuming.
As you’ve seen there are plenty of ways that you can be greener over the winter. Hopefully these eco tips for winter will help you out.
Even better, try to apply these rules to the rest of the year, too. Every small effort adds up and contributes to the battle against climate change.
If you liked that, read more on eco-friendly living…
Ben is the Creator and Editor of Tiny Eco Home Life. I write and publish information about more sustainable, environmentally friendly living in and around the home.
Alongside this website, I love spending time in the natural world, living a simple life and spending time with my young family (Murphy the dog!) I round up my thoughts and recent blogs on the Eco Life Newsletter.