It’s now coming to that time of year where we all like to wrap up warm and do our best to avoid the elements. Huddling around the radiator can seem like an appealing option but there are other, less extreme ways that you can keep warm.
Your bathroom can often be the hardest place in the house to keep warm over the winter months given the constant need for ventilation and the drastic changes in temperature and humidity as your family uses the bath or shower.
There are two main strategies to keeping your bathroom warm over the colder months of the year. The first is to invest time and money in insulating your bathroom more efficiently. This is a brilliant investment and will keep the bills down when things start to get a bit chilly. The second is to increase the amount of heat there is in the bathroom, allowing things to warm up that little bit quicker.
Improving insulation within the bathroom
1. Replace silicone sealant on the window edges
Over time, the sealant around window edges can begin to deteriorate, leaving gaps for cold air to enter the bathroom or for heat to be lost. Resealing window edges with silicone sealant is not only simple but can do wonders in helping your bathroom to insulate heat and will only set you back a matter of pounds from your local DIY supplier.
2. Install weather stripping on window or door edges
Weather stripping is a more heavy duty alternative to simple silicone caulking and can be found at the majority of DIY goods suppliers in the form of a long, coil of plastic and rubber sealant stripping that can be cut down to the necessary size to fit any window or door. The process of sealing window edges is very similar to caulking and is often more efficient at keeping both cold air and water from seeping through the gaps around your windows.
3. Window insulation film
Window insulation film is a thin plastic film that can be applied to any window. This effectively reduces the amount of heat lost through typical convection. The film is can either be directly applied to a window using a hair dryer to shrink the film around the glass or can be attached to the window ledge to create a still air layer around half an inch thick using pressure sensitive tape. This restricts the convective air flow onto the inside glass surface, much like adding an extra layer of glazing but with the benefit of a much smaller cost. Window insulation film can also help limit or prevent condensation, reducing the risk of mould and mildew build up.
4. Installing proper ventilation
A lot of people will often ventilate their bathroom by opening windows. Whilst this is a quick and efficient method of doing so, heat can be lost incredibly quickly and can often be both difficult and slow to reheat during the winter months. Installing an extractor fan in your bathroom can prevent the need for opening a window and help retain heat as well as assisting in removing any bad smells from your bathroom.
Adding some more heat to the bathroom
1. Bleeding a bathroom radiator
Sometimes the simplest solutions are often the best. A lot of the time, bathroom radiators needs to be bled to work as efficiently as possible. If your radiator is either taking a long time to heat up, is not staying as warm as it should be or is only heating up at certain sections of the radiator, there’s a good chance that it needs bleeding. This is a simple operation and often only needs the bleed valve to be turned slightly using a radiator bleeding key. Turn the key slightly until you can hear air passing through the valve and close again when water starts to pass through.
2. Installing a more efficient radiator or towel rail
The largest source of heat within any bathroom is always going to be a bathroom radiator. Often, a lot of bathroom radiators can be either too small to heat the room they’re placed in or, if they’re quite old, can have a low heat output compared to today’s standards. Installing a larger or more energy efficient radiator within your bathroom can help heat it up a lot quicker and will save on energy bills in the long term.
3. Water saving shower heads
During the winter, a lot of us will take longer showers to keep warm or to just delay the inevitability that is getting out of the shower. If this is the case, it might be best to install water saving shower head. Water saving shower heads restrict the flow of water through the head by anything up to 50% of typical usage. This will allow you to take a guilt-free longer shower whilst using a much smaller amount of water in the process. Some now also draw in air and mix it with the water to create heavier water droplets that feel as if their is a larger amount of water passing through the shower head.
4. Install under floor heating
Whilst the cost of installing under floor heating can look quite steep in the short term, the long term savings can be high, making it a solid bathroom investment. The process of installation involves using heated cabling or heated mats underneath your bathroom floor to gently warm the bathroom. A lot of the time, these can be controlled using a switch or timed thermostat to make sure you have a toasty bathroom floor before you step foot in the bathroom.