How much heat is your house losing?

    With energy prices at their current levels everyone is interested in ways to reduce gas and electricity consumption. Every house loses some heat but there are ways to reduce this if you know where to look.

    An infrared, or thermal imaging, camera can show areas where heat is escaping from your house. 

    This might be through, or around, doors, windows, walls or roofs. If you know where to look, then you can think about how to reduce it.

    Some things may require investment, such as replacing single glazed with double or triple glazed windows, but sometimes the solution can be very simple and even free, such as reducing draughts under a door with an old rug. The key is to understand, and then you can decide what to do. Getting into action and reducing heat losses will save you money but also reduce your carbon footprint. And anything you do will also save money and reduce your environmental impact next year and the year after.

    At the beginning of this year Sidmouth Town Council bought an infrared camera to help residents understand heat loss from their houses. 90 residents took up the offer and a small team of volunteers photographed each house and produced a short report on where there was evidence of heat loss. The most common problem we found was leaking door seals producing draughts around front, back and patio doors.  However, we also saw areas of roof without loft insulation, slumped cavity wall insulation, poorly installed windows compromising the wall cavity, unlagged hot water or central heating pipes, single skin outside walls, and poorly insulated doors with heat loss through the door itself. Some problems could be easily fixed but others appeared to be as a result of poor design or construction.

    Armed with the information, residents were then able to work out what would help their situation or ask for the relevant professional advice.

    Sidmouth Town Council is delighted to be able to offer the same service this winter. If you are interested, please contact Sidmouth Town Council and complete the form on the Council website.

    The survey will be offered on a first come first served basis and as we have limited numbers of volunteers, we cannot guarantee we will be able to provide a survey this winter; we will however seek to do as many as we can. The volunteers are not qualified heating technicians but are trained in the use of the camera and image interpretation. If you would like to volunteer to join the team, please contact the Town Council and we will arrange a training session

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