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Stay Warm This Winter With Thermal Roller Blinds
18 June 2015
Stay Warm This Winter With Thermal Roller Blinds

Where’s My Home Losing Heat And How Can I Stop It?

These cold winter days play havoc with New Zealanders’ health and heating bills so we thought we’d have a look through the research on what we can do to keep our homes warm and toasty.

Where are the weak spots?

Generally 25% of heat produced inside your home will escape through the roof, 35% will disappear through the walls and the gaps around windows and doors and 10% is lost through the floor. Because your walls, roof and floor are the largest surface area, this is where you should concentrate your expenditure when it comes to preventing heat loss – mainly through insulation or under-floor heating.

What about other gaps?

New Zealand homes – especially older wooden ones – can be especially draughty because of gaps left around windows and doors. Just as you wouldn’t want a fridge to have an ill-fitting door because it would let the cold out and cost you more in power, so you don’t want ill-fitting windows and doors on your home because you just let all the heating out and it costs you more in the long term. Make sure all your seals are snug and any catches and latches on windows and doors are tight.

How important are your windows?

Although double-glazing is often seen as the best way to keep a house warm, you have to remember two things: your walls are usually far larger than your windows so deal to them first; and double-glazing is a really expensive option which might well cost much more than the energy savings. Your best option, money-wise, is to concentrate on fully insulating your home and then properly fitting and using thermal roller blinds.

What do you mean by “properly fitting and using”?

Keeping your home warm and energy costs low requires a bit of thought – firstly, fit them so you create a good seal to the window alcove so warm air can’t flow in and the cold air is trapped between the blind and the window. Good blinds can reduce heat loss by up to 60% for single-glazed windows and between 40 and 50% for double-glazing. In terms of using your blinds – keep them open during the day to let in the radiant heat from our strong New Zealand sunlight and then close them when the sun goes down to trap the heat in.

Is there anything else I can do to control heat loss?

It’s not necessarily a heat loss issue – more of a heat cost issue, but it’s really important to have good thermostatic heating controls so you don’t pump out too much costly heat when you don’t need it.