June means the official start of winter in New Zealand. For Auckland residents this means several months of chillier, damp, windy weather. We hope that the following hints & tips will help to keep you toasty over the next few months.
- Warm yourself first
It’s easier to adjust your body temperature than your room temperature, so layer up. And not just with your clothes, but with your bed too. Ideally, thicker blankets should be closer to your skin, with thinner, denser blankets on top.
2. Switch your energy supplier
How long have you been with your energy provider? Are you sure you couldn’t get a better deal from a different company? Use comparison sites such as What’s My Number or Switch Me to check.
3. Exclude those drafts
This is a proven way to keep you warmer and save you money. For windows, use some self-adhesive foam strips to seal the gaps. For doors, you can either buy ready-made draft excluders or have a go at making your own. Old pairs of tights stuffed with socks might not be the prettiest, but they’ll do the job!
4. Let the sunlight in
Throw back the curtains and make the most of natural heat. It’s free, and it helps to counter any dampness. Be sure to draw your curtains as soon as the sun fades in order to retain that warmth.
5. Leave doors open
It might sound counter-intuitive but, during the day when the sun’s streaming through the windows, you want to spread that free heat around as much as possible. Similarly if you’re cooking in the kitchen – let the dry warmth travel.
6. Cut off the spare room
If you’re not using a room, don’t heat it. Switch off the heater, and shut the door (being sure to check for drafts.) Make sure you have a good de-clutter too; you don’t want piles of paper or clothes to attract moisture or mould.
7. Use tin foil
Pop some heat reflective aluminium foil behind wall-mounted heaters. This is especially handy if you’ve radiators on external walls. You can buy foil that’s designed specifically for this purpose, or you could choose good quality kitchen foil (but that probably won’t be quite as effective.)
8. Move your sofa
In fact, this applies to any piece of furniture that’s positioned right in front of a radiator. It’s just blocking the warmth. Have a shift around and make sure you feel the full effect of the heater.
And a couple of bigger projects for a warmer, more energy-efficient house…
Check your roof
Standing at ground level, and using a camera with a zoom or a set of binoculars, check for areas of weakness. Please don’t ever climb up there to have a walk around. Especially in cold, damp conditions this is way too dangerous. We don’t want anyone slipping and injuring themselves. If you’ve any concerns at all with your metal roof, contact Cowperthwaite Roofing so that we can carry out an inspection on your behalf.
Insulate, insulate, insulate
Once your roof is secure, help it to work efficiently by putting in adequate insulation. You should feel the benefits immediately. And remember, if you own a rental property, you’ll need to get this insulated too before July 2019. You can read more about the legislation changes in this article from the NZ Herald.
The Energywise website has more information about the NZ Standard for installing insulation.
Cowperthwaite Roofing’s tips compiled from information on: energywise.govt.nz, mentalfloss.com, mirror.co.uk, bbc.co.uk.
Please note: “Cowperthwaite Roofing’s low-tech, low-cost tips for keeping warm this winter” is written in good faith and for general purposes only. You should not rely on the tips given here as an alternative to specialist advice. If you have any questions about any issue covered, you should consult with an appropriately qualified professional.