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    • zippychick
    • By zippychick 26th Nov 14, 11:48 AM
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    zippychick
    Preparing for Winter V
    • #1
    • 26th Nov 14, 11:48 AM
    Preparing for Winter V 26th Nov 14 at 11:48 AM

    Official MoneySavingExpert.com Insert:

    If you've come through to this discussion from this week's email, welcome to the MSE Forum. You've joined our Old Style MoneySaving forumites chatting about how to prepare for winter.

    Read below, read the last few pages of the discussion to see their most recent posts and click "reply" to join in. If you haven!!!8217;t already joined join the forum to reply.

    Back to zippychick's original post...

    -----

    Hi everyone,

    As the last 'preparing for winter' thread has now grown quite long, I think it's time for a new one, and what better time of year to begin to prepare than the end of November

    So here goes....a shiny new thread. Please post below all your preparations for winter. If you want to read through the tips on the older threads you can find them here:

    Preparing for Winter

    Preparing for winter II

    Preparing for winter III

    Preparing for winter IV

    Other links that may help:

    the ice man cometh! (merged with keeping warm)

    Things that worked or didn't work last winter

    Frugal but happy in winter?

    Winter checklist

    Lets hope it's a good one for all of us.

    Zip



    This Forum tip was included in MoneySavingExpert.com's weekly email!
    Last edited by MSE Andrea; 11-10-2017 at 1:35 PM.
    A little nonsense now and then is relished by the wisest men
    Norn Iron club member #380

Page 107
    • zeupater
    • By zeupater 8th Jan 18, 8:20 PM
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    zeupater
    ... Bedsocks at night make a big difference to being cosy and comfortable when sleeping
    Originally posted by kittie
    Hi

    Mrs Z picked up a 13tog feather duvet 'for a song' a couple of weeks ago whilst buying some bread & milk! ... I've never liked high tog duvets in the past, but this one is really good, the feathers keep the shape more rigid (so far!) and seem to 'breathe' better than the 4 season 'man made fibre' ones we've had in the past .... have been cosy & slept really well recently without the need for bedsocks!

    HTH
    Z
    Last edited by zeupater; 08-01-2018 at 9:01 PM.
    "We are what we repeatedly do, excellence then is not an act, but a habit. " ...... Aristotle
    • herbily
    • By herbily 8th Jan 18, 8:21 PM
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    herbily
    up when I moved in or I would have used it.
    Apparently the 3rd chimney was for a boiler in the kitchen, for doing the washing, but I can't find any neighbours who remember where it was or how it worked.
    Originally posted by mardatha

    Mar, if you look at the picture of a wash house copper here:
    https://owlcation.com/humanities/Working-Class-life-in-the-1940s-Wash-Day it may be the kind of thing your house had originally. I have a 1940s house with an outside scullery, and I still have the chimney to it. When I moved in, my next door neighbours had been there since the houses were built and could remember there being a built-in sort of hearth arrangement to hold the copper, and you put coal in either underneath or to one side to heat it.


    I really love my washing-machine! I now use the outside scullery as my wood shed.
    One day at a time...
    • mardatha
    • By mardatha 8th Jan 18, 8:54 PM
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    mardatha
    That's an interesting site herblily. I can remember my mum doing the washing in a gas-fired zinc boiler in the early 50s. It had a wooden worktop (bunker) on hinges above it that could be lifted up against the wall and let down when you'd finished. If we had bought this house we would have opened up the bedroom fireplace and looked into getting a wee stove for the kitchen.
    • Siebrie
    • By Siebrie 11th Jan 18, 8:32 PM
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    Siebrie
    Bedsocks at night make a big difference to being cosy and comfortable when sleeping
    Originally posted by kittie
    I wear bedsocks, and my GP has told me to make sure they are clean socks, not the ones I wear during the day, as that may cause athlete’s foot.

    Regarding duvets: I am easily cold at night, so I have an electric blanket set to hot for 2 hours before I go to bed. I also have a single down duvet underneathe the kingsize down four-season duvet I share with my husband. It really helps that I can wrap the single duvet around me and avoid any draughts in the neck area.
    Wombling to wealth 2018 € 549.29 = £ 483.30
    Still a womble 2017 #25 € 7116,68= £ 6309.50
    Wombling Free 2016 #2 € 3.483,31= £ 2,969.05
    • zeupater
    • By zeupater 11th Jan 18, 9:17 PM
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    zeupater
    ... I have an electric blanket set to hot for 2 hours before I go to bed. I also have a single down duvet underneathe the kingsize down four-season duvet I share with my husband. It really helps that I can wrap the single duvet around me and avoid any draughts in the neck area.
    Originally posted by Siebrie
    Hi

    Are you sure you're not describing a moneysaving 'slow cooker' ...
    "We are what we repeatedly do, excellence then is not an act, but a habit. " ...... Aristotle
    • Siebrie
    • By Siebrie 12th Jan 18, 8:43 AM
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    Siebrie

    I would love to keep it on during the night, but I don't feel safe!
    Wombling to wealth 2018 € 549.29 = £ 483.30
    Still a womble 2017 #25 € 7116,68= £ 6309.50
    Wombling Free 2016 #2 € 3.483,31= £ 2,969.05
    • kittie
    • By kittie 12th Jan 18, 9:05 AM
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    kittie
    There is no way I would sleep on any emf ie a field caused by electricity going through a wire (I have a physics background). The field is magnetic and reaches a distance outside the wires. Red blood cells, containing iron, are affected by magnetism. If I use my electric blanket then it is only on for 20 minutes before bed.

    Re my winter socks, I use hm knitted clean woollen socks every day in winter. Obviously having athletes foot and wearing the same dirty to bed is unhygenic. All that dirt from the road!! If it is so cold that I need bedsocks then I get a clean pair from a drawer, I would have thought everyone would do this, it is just basic hygiene as is washing feet and drying between toes
    • mardatha
    • By mardatha 12th Jan 18, 9:52 AM
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    mardatha
    Was minus 7 up north last night - the highlands have been a different weather zone this winter. Currently 3C here and the usual dark dull boring muck...... one is definitely not amused. At all!
    • MrsLurcherwalker
    • By MrsLurcherwalker 12th Jan 18, 2:12 PM
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    MrsLurcherwalker
    Dull, dreary and chilly here in the deep south too MAR, depressingly grey and depressingly damp without it actually raining, it's like living at the bottom of an empty puddle!!!
    Thumpers mum was right - if you can't find anything nice to say don't say anything at all!
    • fuddle
    • By fuddle 12th Jan 18, 3:01 PM
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    fuddle
    Kittie you wouldn't believe how many ladies I cared for told me that carers don't dry in between toes!
    • tori.k
    • By tori.k 13th Jan 18, 11:27 AM
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    tori.k
    Mardatha or anyone who uses coal as their heating, can I please pick your brain
    We moved on to coal as the wood wasn't heating the place enough, been lovely to be able to keep the fire in overnight and keeping an ambient temperature of around 20c fire is set to it's lowest setting just ticking away, we have a 9.2 kw stove using around 8-10kg of smokeless coal a day, ( £5) does this sound about right.
    First time I've used coal so have no idea what I'm doing
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    • zeupater
    • By zeupater 13th Jan 18, 1:48 PM
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    zeupater
    Mardatha or anyone who uses coal as their heating, can I please pick your brain
    We moved on to coal as the wood wasn't heating the place enough, been lovely to be able to keep the fire in overnight and keeping an ambient temperature of around 20c fire is set to it's lowest setting just ticking away, we have a 9.2 kw stove using around 8-10kg of smokeless coal a day, ( £5) does this sound about right.
    First time I've used coal so have no idea what I'm doing
    Originally posted by tori.k
    Hi

    We don't use coal, but a good proportion of our heating is provided by burning logs (8kW high efficiency burner), so I'm surprised that your logs aren't giving out enough heat ... what kind of wood were you burning (hard/soft?) & was it fully seasoned and stored undercover? ...

    10kg of logs in a reasonably efficient burner should provide around 40kWh.t and the same weight of a decent smokeless coal around double (so~ 80kWh.t) ... at prices around here, bulk hardwood logs cost around the same per kWh.t as smokeless coal but is far more emissions/climate friendly.

    As an aside, if 8-10kg of smokeless coal is costing £5, you're paying at least a 50% premium over what you could be buying the fuel for!

    HTH
    Z
    Last edited by zeupater; 13-01-2018 at 2:02 PM. Reason: + .t
    "We are what we repeatedly do, excellence then is not an act, but a habit. " ...... Aristotle
    • tori.k
    • By tori.k 13th Jan 18, 3:32 PM
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    tori.k
    Hi

    We don't use coal, but a good proportion of our heating is provided by burning logs (8kW high efficiency burner), so I'm surprised that your logs aren't giving out enough heat ... what kind of wood were you burning (hard/soft?) & was it fully seasoned and stored undercover? ...

    10kg of logs in a reasonably efficient burner should provide around 40kWh.t and the same weight of a decent smokeless coal around double (so~ 80kWh.t) ... at prices around here, bulk hardwood logs cost around the same per kWh.t as smokeless coal but is far more emissions/climate friendly.

    As an aside, if 8-10kg of smokeless coal is costing £5, you're paying at least a 50% premium over what you could be buying the fuel for!

    HTH
    Z
    Originally posted by zeupater
    It's due to a mix of working hours and solid stone walls, the burner is our only source of heating and we couldn't keep the fire in long enough to put enough heat into the walls so couldn't get the temperature above 14-15c running seasoned hardwood, the coal is allowing us to keep the fire ticking over . We've been getting the coal for just over £9 a 20kg bag of taybright with delivery the coal man suggest it because we are out so much and it's easy to keep in, but we do seem to be going through it fast, up to this year we've always seasoned our own wood so don't really have a reference cost wise for heating.
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    • mardatha
    • By mardatha 13th Jan 18, 5:42 PM
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    mardatha
    tori we use smokeless eggs, at £18 a bag. I dono how much the bag weighs but it's a full sized sack from the coalman. We go through 2 a week, topping the fire up in the morning then emptying the ash and filling right up at teatime. We keep it at 0 on the wee dial at the side. That heats my stone walls, logs or wood or peat never did. Also gives us enough hot water for 3 baths a day if we want.
    • mardatha
    • By mardatha 13th Jan 18, 5:46 PM
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    mardatha
    Get a bag of anthracite and put some of that on overnight, it damps the fire down and keeps it smouldering until morning, when you poke it up and put some coal on. Lots of people here mix coal and logs to save money, at weekends you could maybe use up some of the logs. Husband is low thyroid and heart probs and he feels the cold, so it matters a lot to us to stay warm and cosy - livingroom is a constant 24/26C. I hope this all helps you pet x
    • zeupater
    • By zeupater 13th Jan 18, 7:57 PM
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    zeupater
    It's due to a mix of working hours and solid stone walls, the burner is our only source of heating and we couldn't keep the fire in long enough to put enough heat into the walls so couldn't get the temperature above 14-15c running seasoned hardwood, the coal is allowing us to keep the fire ticking over . We've been getting the coal for just over £9 a 20kg bag of taybright with delivery the coal man suggest it because we are out so much and it's easy to keep in, but we do seem to be going through it fast, up to this year we've always seasoned our own wood so don't really have a reference cost wise for heating.
    Originally posted by tori.k
    Hi

    With solid stone walls you'll have a thermal mass issue regardless of whether you have insulation, or not .... but the best way of keeping warm at an affordable price is to insulate, insulate & when you think you've done enough ... insulate some more (of course, if possible!)

    We're well insulated (cavity, loft etc), but there's plenty of solid internal & external walls to soak up the heat. When there's heat in the walls we don't need to have a fire every day if it's not too cold outside, but if we don't 'top-up' the heat in the walls on a regular basis it takes a massive amount of energy to build the heat back to where it was, normally taking days on end!

    On keeping the fire going overnight .. if necessary we can keep the stove ticking over for 8-10 hours between refuelling by using really large & dense hardwood logs which we keep to one side for that very purpose - the next morning it's just a case of dropping some small logs into the fire & opening up the airflow ... 10-15 minutes later the skin temperature of the burner is back up to ~500F. Sometimes the bed has cooled more than normal, so some screwed-up newspaper is thrown in with the logs, but it's normally burning before you can close the door!

    Regarding £9/bag for smokeless coal - that's £450/tonne! - are you buying small loads or moneysaving by having 1tonne pallets of bags delivered at a time? .. I would have thought that pallet deliveries would save you 25-30%/kWh.t if you have available space & finances.

    On the point of a heating cost-reference, that'll really be down to the combination of your property, how well it's insulated, the heating pattern & (importantly) the temperature you're comfortable in, so it's pretty hard to judge, however, government figures suggest that the average home uses around (from memory) 3300kWh of electricity & 15-18000kWh of heat/DHW from gas (/other sources), but at the extreme end of efficiency there's 'passivhaus' requirements which are based on really low heating requirements per square meter of living space, but this can normally only be achieved in new build properties ...

    A few posts ago I referenced an interesting blog entry on a site in which someone has achieved quite amazing levels of energy efficiency which is probably possible to replicate in a good proportion of UK homes - Winter's arrived in an energy efficient home - other entries for Autumn, Electricity & Gas consumption would provide an idea of what's possible as a target too, worthwhile having a look if/when you have time ...

    HTH & keep warm!
    Z
    Last edited by zeupater; 13-01-2018 at 8:02 PM. Reason: +other
    "We are what we repeatedly do, excellence then is not an act, but a habit. " ...... Aristotle
    • tori.k
    • By tori.k 13th Jan 18, 9:42 PM
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    tori.k
    Insulation is the problem this place is actually designed as a holiday let, we are in the process of moving and foolishly thought we'd be in the new house by now so ran out the wood, this is an unusual conversion the granite holds the heat well if you can get the heat into start with,
    I've never managed to keep a wood fire in overnight no matter how many times I've tried we don't have the greatest of stoves a harmony H33 but it does the job and big enough for me to run a kettle or stew pot on.
    Sounds like what I'm using is about right with coal thanks mardatha and thank you for the link Z as we are making our last house as sustainable and passive as possible. with having do a fair bit of work and move the oil tank to meet the new regs and replacing the old boiler seems a good time to update the whole system to see us through our old age.
    Thanks again
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    • mardatha
    • By mardatha 14th Jan 18, 9:04 AM
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    mardatha
    Tori I've googled your coal and it looks like the wee eggs. Ask the coalman for the bigger eggs, I forget the name of the stuff we get. They last longer and are slightly cheaper. We tried the wee ones and in the morning the fire was nearly out, so we went back to the bigger stuff.
    • MrsLurcherwalker
    • By MrsLurcherwalker 14th Jan 18, 12:17 PM
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    MrsLurcherwalker
    5 degrees out there today and luckily no wind to speak of so not as cold as of late however we are due to get much colder over the next week as is the rest of the country so I've checked in the freezer and have a big bag of YS stewing steak in there and have bought some suet today at the farm shop and next weeks menu will involve a lovely big stew and dumplings to keep us fuelled and warm in the cold snap, a bowl of piping hot stew on a tray in front of the wood stove is a comforting supper in January and guaranteed to warm you through and make you sleep well too!
    Thumpers mum was right - if you can't find anything nice to say don't say anything at all!
    • mardatha
    • By mardatha 14th Jan 18, 12:31 PM
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    mardatha
    Oh that does sound nice! I love dumplings, not seen one in years. We're forecast snow and gales here for Tues/Wed and we have the hospital on Wed, RV has to be in for 8am so I hope we get down ok. Gales for today as well, wind starting to pick up now but at least we saw some sun today and I even walked round the garden tidying up
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