Dealing with draughts
There are some very simple measures you can take to save money and reduce draughts in your home, from putting tape around window seams to fitting chimney balloons.
Whenever making improvements to your home it’s a good idea to seek advice from a professional and carefully read the relevant instructions and warnings for each product or measure.
As well as our handy tips listed below, the Energy Saving Trust has more information on their website. You can also check out the Centre for Sustainable Energy’s comprehensive resources area which has DIY advice leaflets.
Here are a few of our top tips:
Draught excluders are great for stopping draughts coming in from under doors. You can pick up draught excluders online or from your local DIY store. You can also make your own draught excluders. If you are more confident in your craft abilities follow this handy guidance to make a bespoke fabric draught excluder.
TOP TIP – Letterbox draught excluders are readily available at DIY and hardware stores. Most of them are reasonably simple to fit. If you do not feel confident to do it yourself, seek advice or help from a local handyperson.
Taping up draughty windows
TOP TIP – fit draught-proofing tape seals between the window and the frame.
Warm air easily escapes through an unused fireplace and travels up an open chimney because heat rises. The warmer the air is the faster it escapes. You can reduce cold draughts by stopping the warm air leaving. Chimney balloons save money and reduce drafts in unused chimneys in a matter of minutes. Insert one into the flue and pump it up until it’s a tight fit, let air out to remove it, then inflate again when you want to put it back. Never use a chimney balloon when the fireplace is in use, for example, if you light a fire. Chimney balloons, sometimes also called chimney draft excluders, are about £20 but can save on your heating bills over their lifetime.
Front/back doors and wooden frame windows
TOP TIP – windows and external doors can be draught proofed cheaply with a roll of draught proofing tape. Unroll the length to the length of the door or window and then cut to size. Always read the full instructions.
Doors that allow a cold draught to enter a room through the gap between the door and the floor can be quickly remedied using a stocking or one leg from a pair of tights. Push two lengths of pipe lagging that have been cut to the width of the door into the stocking. Tie the open end loosely. Pull the tubes apart slightly apart at one end and slide the middle under the open edge of the door with one roll of the pipe lagging each side of the door. If it’s correctly trimmed to size the door should open and close without the draft excluder getting caught.
For more advanced energy saving home improvements take a look at our page covering: