HOUSEHOLDS will be doing everything they can to keep warm this winter, but it’s not an easy time to just pop on the heating.

As many families try to avoid switching on the radiators in a bid to keep the bills down, one glass expert has revealed how to increase your property’s energy efficiency.

Tom Butler, a glass and glazing expert, has offered his tips to save cash

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Tom Butler, a glass and glazing expert, has offered his tips to save cash

Offering up a window of opportunity is London-based Tom Butler, a glass and glazing expert who works at MyGlazing.com.

When it comes to making energy-efficient home improvements, the key is to adopt a whole house approach, according to Tom.

“There is little point in investing money in just one element if you are not getting the benefit of making your whole house energy-efficient,” he said.

“For example, it’s less beneficial to have loft insulation installed, if your windows and doors are letting heat escape because they are old and draughty.”

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Whilst Tom is quick to acknowledge energy efficient home improvements can be costly, he points out that “the long-term benefit makes them a real investment”.

“In fact, homeowners said they would pay 15% more for a property which has an EPC rating of C or above,” he added.

“The benefits of having energy efficient glazing installed in your home can also include a reduced carbon footprint, improved home security and noise reduction.”

If you’re unsure how to best fit your home with double glazing, Tom has offered his top tips below.

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How much double or triple glazing can you save

The amount homeowners could save is dependent on a number of factors, Tom said.

From the age of the window, what material it’s made from and what the cost of energy is, these are just a few of the variables which impact how much homeowners can save by upgrading windows and doors.

Brits are throwing £616 out of draughty windows and doors each year on average, according to recent research conducted by MyGlazing.com.

It found up to 24 per cent of heat produced in a home can escape out of dated windows.

How much it costs

The cost of any installation of new windows and doors also varies depending on a number of factors.

From the size of the doors and windows needed and whether they’re double or triple glazed, to where in the UK the installation is taking place, all of these variables will impact the cost.

As an example, a recent installation of eight windows and two doors in a three-bedroom semi-detached house cost in the region of £11,500, including VAT, Tom added.

How to save cash

Making home improvements to a property will always have costs attached.

However, when it comes to installing new windows and doors, Tom urged against doing DIY as this can lead to more problems.

He added: “The most cost-effective way for homeowners to replace windows and doors is to use an approved installer who is able to offer a competitive quote, but also someone who can ensure the installation goes according to plan, and lives up to expectations.

“There are also many different types of windows and doors which can be installed, however the most cost-effective option, isn’t always the best option. “

For example, secondary glazing is more cost-effective in the short term than having triple glazed windows installed.

Yet triple glazing offers longer term benefits, such as increased energy efficiency, noise reduction and increased security.

Tom said: “You really do need to do your research first.

“For those homeowners who are looking for a longer term saving, ask to see the BFRC rating of the window or door.

“The better the rating the more money that will be saved on energy bills – those that are A rated and above are the most energy efficient, meaning homeowners can save more on energy bills over the glazing’s lifetime.”

Use an approved installer

Making home improvements of any kind can often be stressful for homeowners.

By using approved tradespeople to make upgrades to a property, homeowners can have peace of mind that the project will be handled effectively.

Homeowners looking to upgrade their windows and doors should head to MyGlazing.com, which is part of the Glass and Glazing federation, to find an approved installer in their local area.

If you use an approved installer and pay for the project using a credit card, you may be covered by consumer protection law known as Section 75 if anything goes wrong.

When to install double or triple glazing

No matter the type of windows and doors a property has, some heat will be lost.

However the older the glazing, the worse the thermal performance.

This is due to advances in technological innovation over the past 20 years, which have seen energy-efficient glazing significantly develop.

This includes everything from specialist glass types, to improved double and triple glazed windows which can save homeowners over 50% in fuel bills.

Last but not least, it’s worth checking how old your windows and doors are too.

Tom said: “Windows and doors which are more than 20 years old aren’t as energy efficient as they could be.

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“This will ultimately be impacting your property’s EPC rating.

“For this reason, homeowners should explore what impact the new window/door will have on the EPC rating.”

This post first appeared on thesun.co.uk

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