When you are enjoying the sunshine months of summer, you easily forget how quickly the nights start to draw in and cold air once again will start to permeate your home. I swear that even when it’s 90 degrees here at 9am, I can sometime feels a fight breeze of autumn, and I know that the stifling humidity will break eventually.

Although you may not want to think about it, a sensible strategy would be to prepare your home for those dark nights with a few simple but effective winter-proofing methods that will keep you warm in the Winter, avoid unnecessary damage to your property, and even cut your fuel bills.

Here is a look at how to use your heating effectively, how to tackle draughts, plus some no-brainer insulation suggestions that will provide instant rewards.

Keeping the temperature at a steady level

It can prove to be more energy-efficient and cost effective to keep your heating on for longer but at lower levels so that the temperature never drops below a certain level.

Advisory bodies like the Centre for Sustainable Energy suggesting programming your heating system to come on before you get up and then aim to keep your rooms at an ambient temperature rather than turning it on and off as and when you start to feel cold.

If you need to add more thermostats or upgrade what you already have to take advantage of better technology and more options you will need these to help you keep your temperature at a good level.

If you are out all day you might want to set the dial a bit lower or program the heating to come on before you get home, simple measures like closing the curtains can keep the heat in.


Tackle those cracks and gaps

Another important DIY task before the Winter months is to work your way around the property and check for any cracks or gaps where you can feel or see that a cold draught will be able to create a bit of a chill.

It is an expensive but effective strategy to use insulating strips and fix any minor repairs to windows and doors that could let the cold air in.

Be careful not to seal or cover any air vents as this can raise the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning.

Check your pipework

Another regular culprit for heat loss and damage when a big freeze arrives is exposed pipework that hasn’t been properly insulated.

Insulating your pipes is a real no-brainer as it will keep your heat in better and provide valuable protection against frost, which should reduce the threat of a cracked or burst pipe in very cold weather conditions.


An easy way of keeping the heat in

When you consider that an estimated 50% of all the heat loss in your home can be attributed to a lack of insulation in your attic and walls it is clearly an area of DIY maintenance that you need to look at.

Insulating your walls will normally involve using a specialist to check the options you have available and suggest an appropriate solution but you can do the insulation work on your attic space yourself.

You don’t want to allow valuable heating to escape over your head and out of the roof so put insulation on your checklist and see what you can do to improve the energy performance of your home.

These are just a few things to think about when your thoughts turn to preparing your home for the Winter before the early dark nights actually arrive. What do you need to do this year to prepare your home?