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Things that worked or didn't work last winter
in Old style MoneySaving
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So she's agreed to do 3 this year. Not holding my breath but ever optimistic.
Other things that have been good this year were Aldi thermals, bought last Autumn and they've been so good, nice and long and cosy. I wish I'd bought more at the time, hopefully they'll come back soon.
Last year I also enjoyed the challenge of delaying having the heating on in October, though I've made up for it since, and will probably have spent far too much on electricity too.
I never bought thermals, I just bought a few strappy vest tops so I can use them in the summer aswell, tightwad that I am
Secondary glazed units installed (listed building so we were limited as to options) have made a big difference in every room of the house. I can still easily open the windows to air the house - very important, especially in an old property.
There was a gale blowing through the kitchen so had draught proofing fitted around the back door; there's now just a draught through the big old keyhole which I cover with a piece of tape :rolleyes:; I never did get around to trying a fridge magnet to block it off. Also had the threshold step repaired and a weather board fitted.
I use my old quilt under the bottom sheet and have a hot water bottle (two if I have backache or if its really cold )
Barneysmum, I think the solution is heavy curtains at the conservatory windows. Keep an eye out in charity shops, I bought two large pairs very cheaply a couple of years ago. Might it be worth getting to know the shop ladies and let them know what you're looking for? If there's no heating in there you could still have a problem with damp - are you able to open window in there occasionally on less wintry days? even just for half an hour would make a difference I think.
I didnt buy the thermals, but I used fleece blankets whilst sitting on the sofa, I have one with 'foot pockets' which is great for keeping the draughts at bay! I like the idea of a wooly hat but havent needed that as I sleep almost entirely under the duvet!
sorry this turned in to a novel ....
C.R.A.P.R.O.L.L.Z Head Sharpener
A double sided draught excluder (made it myself from pipe wrap sections and freebie dining chair material).
Putting curtains up in the kitchen (even tho' the windows are double glazed you could still feel the icy blast on opening the curtains).
Taking the radiator cover off in the living room.
Putting extra cheeks, and back fire-brick in the fire (cut down fuel use and still threw out enough heat).
Using newspaper bricks. (They do work, one buried amonst the "coals" had about 1 hour's burn in it).
Spending a huge chunk of time last summer emptying old insulation, making the roof joists deeper and putting in really thick loft insulation, boarding over the top, and insulating the loft hatch, we had a grant for that too.
Things that didn't work:
using an old quilt as an underblanket... beautifully warm, but gradually damper & damper (..and we air the beds for the major part of the day).
When the fire isn't in, in the living room, there's the heck of a draught down the chimney via the second living room door that hasn't got an excluder, so this year, making another excluder same as first, and finding some way of temporarily covering the opening of the fire when it's not in use.
Stay warm everybody, it's not over yet.
We cut a piece of mdf into a half-oval shape, painted it the same colour as the wall and then just put a little hook in the wall that we could turn when we want to remove the board. Very effective and looks good.
I think I will try curtains next winter.
I have been wondering how to stop the wind whistling through the keyholes in the front and back doors, didn't think of fridge magnets. It's a great idea. I'm off to give it a try right now.
Bought a thermal vest (DS already had thermals and I just well wrapped my DD) which was really useful. Didn't have the heating on much either (hardly ever during the day) and only for a couple of hours morning and night (to take the edge off the cold). Think it's made me a little more hardy!
On the whole we managed but they still put our direct debits up to cover the rising prices grrrrrrr.
But I didn't really notice much difference, the top of the stairs is still very cold, maybe a radiator on the landing would cure it, but it's all money :rolleyes:
This house is a money pit, the people who lived here for 11 years before us did no improvements at all, very negligent IMO. A 100 year old house needs pampering.
I cant take the credit though cats, it was a suggestion I read on the Preparing for winter thread last year
C.R.A.P.R.O.L.L.Z Head Sharpener
I live in a 1950s house which has a big stairwell - a nice feature id you're visiting, not so good to live with as the heat rises into it and is lost without trace. I've still got a separate dining room, with the original fireplace, unblocked it this year and have been lighting a wood fire on cold nights. The plan is to replace the useless glass-fronted solid fuel fire in the other room this year with a wood-burner. The wood has been gathered on country walks during the summer, left to dry in the garage, plus I've been able to buy blocks locally.
Heating was mostly on only morning and evening, except in late January when I was just out of hospital and mostly here during the day.
I invested in a couple of four seasons duvets from Down & Pillow Warehouse thanks to a thread on MSE, bedtimes have been a toasty 13.5tog.. and a couple of hot water bottles with knitted covers (think I'm turning into my granny..). I've managed to survive the winter without putting on heating in the bedrooms...