The 4 most common sources of draughts and how to stop them

There’s no point in spending your hard earned cash on home heating oil only to have the heating fly out the door along with the draughts. If you want to keep your home warm and stop wasting money on home heating oil, you need to find those draughts and fix them. They don’t have to be costly repairs, and in fact you could tackle these problems in one weekend. Ready to get started? Here are the 4 most common sources of draughts and how to stop them.

1. Windows

If your windows won’t close all the way, or they have old, cracked sills and frames than you’ll struggle to keep your room warm even with the heating going full blast. Many homes in Ireland now have PVC windows which helps to keep the heat in, however over time the seals can crack and this lets cold air in and hot air escape. Replace your cracked seals and use caulk to fill any gaps around your window frames and under the window sills where you might not notice any gaps.

If you run your hand underneath and feel a cold patch, it’s likely that you’ll need to fill this space too. When you have your heating on at night, always close your curtains as this helps to keep heat in the room too, but don’t block your radiators with them or you won’t get the full benefit of your heating. Also, if you have single glazed windows, you might want to consider upgrading to double or even triple – you’ll notice a big difference.

2. Letter boxes

In the hallway, it’s normal for this area of the home to feel colder than other rooms, but as you typically don’t spend any time here except when moving from one room to another it’s not normally a problem. This doesn’t mean that you can ignore draughts from this area though – and your letterbox is the key culprit here in letting heat escape. Why not try an external post box outside your front door and close up your letter box instead?

Or, if you prefer to have your post delivered straight on to your front door mat, fix a small draught excluder to this space to reduce the chill factor. These tasks can be done in an afternoon, and you’ll notice a big difference to this area of the house.

3. Open Fires

Open fires are a really cosy addition to your home – when they’re lit. When they aren’t, they can really be very inefficient at keeping heat in your home – you’ll lose a huge proportion of heat up the chimney very quickly. If you don’t plan to block up your open fire, there are chimney draught excluders that you can have installed to reduce the heat loss in your home. This part needs to be done by a specialist, so it’s not likely to be something you can do yourself.

4. Attic hatch

It’s often the last place people look, but when it comes to the most common sources of draughts, you should always remember to look up! Your attic door hatch in the ceiling might look pretty well insulated, but the cold air you can feel from around the edges is most likely because it hasn’t been insulated above, or needs draught excluders attached to the edges of the hatch door. Try tackling this problem to see if it makes your upstairs any warmer.

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