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Keeping your home warm
Keep your home warm - if you can't afford to heat the whole house, keep your living room at 21C and your bedroom at 18C. Give your bedroom a boost before you go to bed each night. Get to know how your heating controls work - if you are unsure, ask a friend or neighbour for help.
Help with heating repairs
If your heating breaks down and you need help to stay warm, we have some heaters available on a short term loan. Contact the Care & Repair team or call 0300 123 5017 (select option 3).
If you need help finding a reputable heating engineer, the Buy with Confidence scheme has details of local, reliable plumbers, electricians, builders, gardeners and many more trades, Contact the Consumer Protection team on 0300 123 5015 or visit the Buy with Confidence website.
If you can't afford the heating repairs, help is available for low income households and people with certain health conditions. We offer Urgent Works Assistance, which is a grant of up to £1,000. To apply, Contact the Care & Repair team.
Insulate your home
Insulate your home to save money and keep the heat in. Loft insulation can save you up to £175 per year off your fuel bills, and cavity wall insulation up to £135 per year savings. Don't forget to draught proof your windows and doors too – that could save you on average £55 per year – it all adds up.
The Green Deal will provide you with a way to insulate your walls or carry out other energy saving measures at no up-front cost. Further free and impartial advice about the Green Deal is available from the Energy Saving Advice Service on 0300 123 1234.
Make sure your heating is safe
Get your boiler and heating services regularly by a qualified engineer.
If you have a gas boiler or other appliances, check that your engineer is Gas Safe registered.
Install a Carbon Monoxide detector - it will alert you if there is a problem. Don't use this as a substitute for servicing your gas appliances though.
If you have a coal fire, remember to have your chimney swept regularly.
Oil-fired heating needs servicing too - choose an OFTEC-registered technician.
Help with heating costs
1 in 10 older people cut back on their winter heating to make ends meet. A range of help is available to help you cover the costs of winter, so make sure you receive your payments.
Winter fuel payments
If you were born on or before 5 July 1952 you should receive a payment automatically. To find out more, contact 0845 915 1515 or visit Gov.UK for advice on winter fuel payments.
Cold weather payments
For when temperatures fall to an average of 0°C for 7 days. If you qualify, you should receive a payment automatically. For more information, visit Gov.UK for advice on cold weather payments.
Warm home discount
Check with your energy supplier if you are entitled to a discount of £130 on your fuel bill. Some people will automatically receive the discount; other who qualify will need to claim.
Thousands of Cheshire East residents are missing out on extra financial support that they are entitled to. Here are just some of the organisations who can help:
- Contact the Benefits team on 0300 123 5013 to find out more about Housing Benefits, Council Tax Benefit and how the welfare reforms may affect you.
- If you are over 50 and living in the Crewe, Nantwich, Audlem, Sandbach, Alsager and Middlewich areas, contact Age UK Cheshire on 01606 881 660.
- If you are over 50 and living in Macclesfield, Congleton, Holmes Chapel, Wilmslow, Knutsford, and Poynton areas, contact Age UK Cheshire East on 01606 612 958.
- The Citizens Advice Bureau have services across Cheshire East. For more information visit the Cheshire East Citizens Advice Service website or contact 08444 111 444.
Dress for warmth
Wear several layers of clothes rather than one chunky layer; this will trap the heat better to keep you warm.
Cover yourself with a blanket or shawl if you are sitting for long periods. Try to put your feet up too! The air is colder near the floor.
Don’t panic! Collect the water in a bucket and switch off your central heating. Turn off your stop tap and turn on your sink taps to drain your water system. Don’t touch wiring or switches which you suspect may have been affected. If in doubt turn off your electricity at the mains and call a plumber. For more information call 0845 746 2200 or visit the United Utilities website.
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