A home expert has shared three ‘cheap’ heating hacks that could actually cost you more.
The cost of living crisis is continuing and winter will shortly be upon us so more households are using heating hacks seen online to reduce energy bills and save cash.
But the tips are aren’t always as ‘money saving’ as they first seem.
Matthew Jenkins an expert at at Myjobquote.co.uk says ‘hacks’ could be costing householders more.
Buying a plug-in electric heater rather than putting on the central heating is the first he considers to not be cost effective.
He said: “There are numerous heating hacks that suggest using a plug-in electric heater, rather than turning on your central heating, to warm your home.
“However, this could cost you more money for several reasons.
“Firstly, some hacks claim portable electric heaters save you money because they are 100 per cent efficient compared to a combi-boiler which is often 85 per cent to 90 per cent efficient.
“However, this doesn’t mean they’re cheaper to run.
“It simply means the energy they consume is turned directly into heating with no energy wasted.
“But if the heater has a high wattage, it will be expensive to run.
“And although boilers are also high-power devices, most of the energy they consume is gas.
“This is cheaper per kWh than electricity.”
Many tips sound cheaper to run but the cost upfront is not always factored in.
He added: “Some 500-watt plug-in heater brands that cost about £50 to buy, are also being touted as a hack.
“Although they only cost around 17p per hour to run, this doesn’t factor in the purchase price or how long you’ll need to run them.
“Portable convector heaters take a long while to heat a room compared to standard radiators.
“And radiant heaters are designed to provide a blast of heat to the area directly in front of them.
“So, they don’t heat a whole room very well.
“As these types of heaters are usually only capable of heating a small room to an ambient temperature, you’re likely to need more than one or to run your central heating anyway.
“This means you’re not going to save money and you may end up spending more on your bills when it’s really cold.”
Fire safety can also be an issue and some heating hacks need to be carried out with caution.
Matthew added “Another heating hack that people are trying is the clay-pot heater.
“You can buy these for around £15 or make your own version using plant pots and tealights.
“Not only is this hack likely to decrease the air quality in your home due to burning tealights but it’s also a potential fire hazard.
“And although burning candles does heat terracotta really well, it only radiates a small amount of warmth.
“So, it’s not sufficient to heat a room.
“This means you’ll still need another form of heating.
“As the warmth created isn’t going to save you more than a few pence, you’re unlikely to make back the cost of buying a pot and a pack of tealights.
“A better option is to turn your heating on and simply switch your thermostat down by one degree.”