Tips for keeping your house warm in Canberra this winter

Brace yourselves, another Game of Thrones reference wasn’t used in this article on keeping your house warm this winter.

ACT sustainability minister Shane Rattenbury said keeping the house warm during Canberra’s winters can be expensive.

The ACT government has released some handy tips for keeping your house warm this winter.

Mr Rattenbury said up 35 per cent of heat can be lost through the ceiling and up to 25 per cent through walls.

Cracks and gaps in skirting can also account for up to 25 per cent of heat loss.

“There are also a range of ACT Government subsidies and support services available to low income households via the St Vincent de Paul.”

The ACT government offered the following tips:

  • Close internal doors and heat only the areas in the house you’re in. If you’ve got ducted heating, 20 per cent of the vents can be closed without damaging the ductwork of the system.
  • Use draught stoppers under doors and foam strips on window frames.
  • Seal cracks and gaps around skirting boards to prevent heat escaping.

With heating, consider which type best suits your needs.

  • A high star rated reverse cycle AC is the most cost effective system to heat space.
  • Column or panel heaters produce radiant heat and are good for heating objects, including people.
  • Electric fans and radiant heaters can be expensive if you’re trying to heat a large space.
  • Heated throw rugs and electric blankets cost $40 – $80 to buy and 2c – 4c per hour to run.

ACT Emergency Services Agency warned to keep heaters at least one metre clear from clothes, bedding, curtains and anything combustible.

“If you’re looking to invest a bit of money in some longer term solutions, ceiling, wall and floor insulation and window coverings are other avenues to explore,” Mr Rattenbury said.

“The ACT Government offers free advice to all Canberra residents on how to improve the energy efficiency of their home and also runs regular workshops to help residents undertake DIY energy efficiency measures in their home.”

The ESA also warned:

  • Heating equipment should be installed by a qualified tradesperson in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions
  • Maintenance of heating equipment should be carried out as recommended by the manufacturer
  • For portable heating, choose models that have automatic safety switches that turn the heater off if tipped over
  • Keep portable electric heaters away from wet areas to avoid the possibility of electric shock
  • Always use a fire screen in front of open fires
  • Children and pets must be supervised when heaters are in use
  • Flues and chimneys should be cleaned once a year to prevent a build-up of flammable material and ensure the heater functions correctly
  • Ensure only the approved fuel is used in liquid fuelled heaters

Source: The Canberra Times

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