Staying Warm in winter is really important, especially for children, older people and those with disabilities. This leaflet if full of useful tips to keep your home warm, keep on top of your bills, and keep healthy.
Heat your home well
Setting your heating to the right temperature (18-21°C), insulating to keep the heat in, and using energy efficiently means you can still keep warm and lower your bills.
Eat well, keep active and look after yourself
Remember to wrap up warm, look after yourself and be prepared in case of bad weather conditions.
Get financial support
Ensure that you are getting all the benefits, grants and financial support that you are entitled to. You may be eligible for additional financial help to heat and insulate you home.
Heating your home and energy saving tips
Heating your home and hot water
Turn your room thermostat down, every 1°C can save you money, but keep main living areas between 18°C and 21°C. Check that you know how to set the heating controls in your home to get the most out of the energy you're using. Set your hot water cylinder thermostat to 60°C, you don't need to have your tap water any hotter. Thermostatic Radiator Valves (TRVs) allow you to set lower temperatures in some rooms than in others and to turn the heating off in rooms which aren't used.
Keeping your home warm
Insulate your home to help keep the heat in and heating costs down. Consider how much you could save by insulating your loft, walls, floor and installing double or secondary glazing. Draught proof all windows and doors to help keep rooms warm, however, it is important rooms are adequately ventilated so don't block air vents. A hot water tank insulation jacket (8cm / 3 inches thick) will save energy keeping your hot water hot.
Cooking, washing and drying
Use your microwave, they use 80% less energy than conventional ovens. Cook with lids on pans and use the right size gas / electric ring. Use cooler wash temperatures for your washing machine and the 'eco' or 'economy' programme if you have a dishwasher. Always wash full loads. Tumble dryers use lots of energy and are expensive to run, air dry clothes on clothes racks with windows open or outside to avoid condensation problems.
Lighting and electricals
Switch lights off when nobody is in the room and use energy efficient light bulbs - they are inexpensive, last 12 times longer and can save you £10 a year per bulb. Don't leave electrical appliances on 'standby' when not in use. When buying new appliances, look out for the most energy-efficient ones with the Energy Saving Trust recommended logo.
Keeping safe and well
Food is a vital source of energy which helps to keep your body warm. Ensure you have hot meals and drinks regularly throughout the day.
Get a flu jab
If you are over 65 or have a long term health condition, you can get a free jab from your GP to protect against seasonal flu strains.
Look after yourself and others
Remember to wrap up warm, and wear a hat, especially if you go outside on cold days. If you have a disabled or older neighbour or relative, look out for them during winter to make sure t hey are safe and well.
Keeping active generates heat, helping to keep you warm, and also improves circulation.
Stock up cupboards and freezers in case bad weather means you can't get out. Check oil and gas tanks regularly and order well in advance in case deliveries are held up by bad weather. In case of loss of power, keep emergency heating and lighting handy as well as plenty of winter clothes. Keep winter equipment in cars, such as a shovel, blanket, torch, and tow rope. Only go out into bad weather if you absolutely have to.
Free Home Fire Safety Visit
Every Home in Cumbria is eligible to apply for a free home safety visit to help them to deal with the potential fire hazards in their homes. Call now to arrange for a Fire Safety Officer to complete a free Fire Safety check in your home, and to discuss your free smoke alarm and fire plan.
You can apply online just complete the Cumbria Fire safety home visit scheme form or telephone 0800 358 4777.
Financial support and other information
Keeping your home warm can be expensive, especially if you are on a low income. Using the most affordable fuel wisely and ensuring you are on the cheapest tariff can help. You may be entitled to additional benefits, grants or discounts to make your home more energy efficient. In extreme winter weather conditions you may also be entitled to a cold weather payment and emergency funding. For more information contact:
Age UK Carlisle and Eden - Telephone: 01768 863618.
Advice on benefits, heating and grants for those over 50.
Citizens Advice Bureau - Telephone: 01768 863564.
Advice on benefits, heating, grants and debt.
- Eden District Council:
Housing Services - Telephone: 01768 212 451 / 488.
Help and assistance in making your home more energy efficient, and in extreme weather conditions giving you advice and guidance.
Housing Benefit - Telephone: 01768 212 184 / 257.
Information and advice on housing benefit in Eden.
Energy Saving Trust - Freephone: 0800 512 012.
Free, impartial information and advice about energy efficiency and grants and schemes available for implementing energy efficient measures.
Home Heat Helpline - Freephone: 0800 33 66 99.
Information and advice on reduced 'social' tariffs from energy suppliers, managing your bills and reducing energy use.
The Pension Service - Freephone: 08456 060 265.
Free benefits advice check for anyone over 60.
Warm Front - Freephone 0800 3162 814
Grants are available to help cover the costs of insulating your home or installing new heating systems. You may be able to take advantage of this scheme if you are on a qualifying benefit.
For further information: