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Staying Warm in Bristol

Winter is upon us once again, but instead of feeling the chill (and the pinch), combat the freezing temperatures with the following tips.

Cold homes have a significant impact on people’s health especially if they're chronically ill, disabled or elderly.

One of the best ways to keep yourself fighting fit during the winter months is by keeping warm and cosy at home. With a little preparation we can help ourselves to stay healthy, safe and as comfortable as possible this winter.

Read on to find out how you can keep yourself and your family warm and well this winter without having to crank up the thermostat. 

Prepare

  • Check with your energy supplier for further advice to help you prepare for winter
  • If you have wood-burning, coal or gas heaters, make sure there’s adequate ventilation and get your boiler serviced every 12 months by a gas engineer
  • If water pipes freeze they can burst, so you need to be able to turn off the water at the main stopcock. Make sure you know where your main stopcock is and check that it’s easy to turn
  • Keep a mixture of salt and sand handy to put on steps or paths in icy weather. 
  • Keep basic food items in the cupboard or freezer in case the weather prevents you from leaving the house. Alternatively do your food shopping online and get it delivered straight to your door

Staying Warm

  • Wear several thin layers, rather than one thick layer
  • If possible, wear clothes made from wool, cotton or fleecy fabrics
  • To stop heat escaping, draw your curtains as soon as it gets dark 
  • To keep heat inside, close any windows and internal doors
  • If you’re feeling cold at home, slip on a hat and scarf, the majority of heat is lost through the head and neck so this will help to combat that
  • Because your body keeps warm by burning food you've eaten, ensure that you're having regular hot meals. Carbs such as potatoes, pasta, bread and rice will keep you the warmest

Long Term Tips 

  • Service your heating system and sweep your chimney regularly
  • Invest in a keyhole cover – this is a cheap and effective way to help keep the draughts out
  • To lock heat in, fit your curtains with thermal linings
  • Free cavity wall insulation is a prime example of benefits and grants available to help with insulation and energy efficiency - check out which options are available to you

Handy Tips for Reducing Fuel Bills

  • Switch off lights when you leave a room
  • Avoid leaving electrical items, such as Televisions and game consoles on standby - switch them off
  • You don’t need your heating on all the time, use your timer to avoid unnecessary costs
  • Only boil as much water in a kettle as you need
  • Set your washing machine to wash at 30°C
  • When your laptop or mobile phone reaches full power - switch off the charger
  • Ensure that your radiators aren't blocked by furniture
  • Make your dishwasher more energy efficient by filling it fully before using it 

Useful Telephone Numbers

  • Age UK Advice - 0800 169 6565
  • Warm Front - 0300 123 1234
  • Government Winter Fuel Payments - 08459 151515

Click here for more advice and tips about staying warm this winter courtesy of Bristol City Council.

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