Brits are being urged to watch out for three things before turning on your heating this year. 

Autumn has arrived and winter is well on its way which means that it's not long until we're wearing big coats and scarves and debating about when to put on the heating. 

Before you give in and turn up the thermostat, there are a few things that you should know going into the colder months.

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From the exact date you should be turning it on to the 3 things that you must look out for before you do, these tips will help you have an equally cosy and energy-efficient home.

When should I turn on the heating?

Experts have used weather data to reveal the exact date you should be looking to dial your thermostat up.

Analysing Met Office data from the past five years, online heating specialists, BestHeating, have revealed that you should turn your heating on from October 20 this year.

From this date, temperatures aren’t expected to rise above 15°C for the rest of the year.

However, the experts noted that 2022 was a particularly warm year and saw temperatures of up to 23°C in October (29th).

If we are to have similar weather this autumn, then it will be around November 2 until the boiler is required to work hard.

Jess Steele, heating technology expert at BestHeating commented: “Whilst there isn’t an optimum time to switch heating on, our research shows that once temperatures are below 15°C, usually in the middle of October, it is best to turn the heating on as we feel the chill more.


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"By the end of the month, even the hardiest among us will have our heating on to keep warm as temperatures are predicted to drop further.

“If it is below 13°C outside then serious health issues can arise, especially in vulnerable people. With many worried about their finances, it can be tempting to hold off putting the heating on but be careful delaying this too long as this can hurt your body.

"For those struggling, we recommend contacting your local council or energy supplier as there are often grants and help available to keep you safe throughout winter.”

3 things to look out for before turning your heating on

When a jumper no longer cuts it and you're about to turn on the heating, the experts at BOXT have shared the 3 things you need to look out for first.

The energy experts have shared the 'telltale signs' that your radiator needs bleeding as well as a step-by-step guide on how you bleed yours.

“Bleeding your radiators can help you to achieve a more efficient and environmentally-friendly home," Andy Kerr, Founder at BOXT, commented.

These are the three signs you need to look for:

  • Your radiator is cold at the top
  • There are damp patches or condensation surrounding the radiator or above it
  • Your radiator makes funny noises when heating up

How to bleed your radiator

The team at BOXT has also talked us through how to bleed your radiator in this handy step-by-step guide.

Follow these 10 steps to bleed your radiator yourself below and if you need more guidance, visit the BOXT website.

1. Start off by turning your boiler on and allowing your radiators plenty of time to fully heat up. This way, you can easily identify which radiators need some TLC and which can be left alone.

2. Carefully have a feel around the surface of your radiators (without burning yourself!) for any cold patches. If any make a funny noise when heating up, have patches that heat doesn’t reach or you notice a radiator is cold at the top, it is definitely worth bleeding them. 

3. Once you’ve identified the radiators that need some attention, turn the heating off and allow the radiators plenty of time to cool down. If you attempt to bleed a radiator with your heating on, you risk hurting yourself with the hot air or water from your radiators. You don’t want any trips to A&E just from trying to bleed a radiator.

4. Bleed your downstairs radiators first, then move on to upstairs.

5. Place an old towel and a container below the radiator valves to catch any liquids to protect your home from any dirty radiator water spillage.

6. Use an old cloth or thick gloves to twist your radiator key anti-clockwise and open the valve.

7. Don’t open your radiator valve completely or keep it open for too long. Turn the valve enough to hear the hissing noise of air escaping. Allow all the trapped air to escape until the sound stops and a steady stream of water starts to leak from the valve.

8. Wipe away any excess moisture or condensation once you’re done, in order to avoid any rust forming around your radiator valves.

9. Double-check that your efforts have paid off. Firstly, check your boiler pressure. It’s normal for your pressure to decrease slightly after radiator bleeding. However, for reference, it should be around 1.0 - 1.5 bars when switched off and can rise to around 2 bars when switched on. 

10. If your boiler pressure appears fine, it’s time for a ‘heat test’. Boot up your central heating and have another feel of your radiators. All being well, there should be no more cold patches, meaning you and your family can feel the full benefits of a warm home and save some cash on your bills - it’s a win-win situation.