Around mid to the end of May we start to enter winter, well it is now upon us and we need heating in winter.

So what form of heating do we get the best results from – solid fuel wood heaters can heat a whole home and some only one room, we could ask which one is the best for heating and our economy.

Well, even the most expensive and least expensive solid fuel heater may allow us some comfort however it is the lurking danger for the breathing in of carcinogens – fine particles and gases of carbon monoxide among many other lethal chemicals – the best and the worst solid fuel heaters share these possibilities equally. The possibility for fire and the hidden danger to our health, smoke inhalation can be fatal and all types of respiratory problems can ensue from solid fuel wood heaters.

So if we cancel wood heaters then there are radiant heaters, these can be either cheap or expensive however these have been the cause for many home fires.

Then you have the choice of convection, fan heaters, panel heaters, reverse cycle electric, split systems, ducted gas there are many types of heating systems on the market to choose from. Possibly reverse cycle or ducted gas heating may be the best for our health.


Look at air leaks around the home. If you have a sub floor it will be an advantage to block any air leaks and insulate.

The idea is to keep the enclosed space (the inside of the home) as air tight as possible, however in saying that we also need to allow for some ventilation through the windows.

It is best to work out what is the best time of day for where you are geographically situated to afford some ventilation during the day. We should leave some windows slightly ajar to avoid condensation. Heavy curtains and timber pelmets as well as thermal blinds, although expensive will save a hell of a lot of money over double glazing, draught excluders below doors all help to retain heating in winter.

Seal around windows and doors to stop air leakage. The number one situation for sealing the enclosed space – is the ceiling – as heat rises this is where we can lose a lot of heated air to the roofspace.

Up to 27% of home heating is lost to the roofspace so get rid of the following – downlights that open to the roofspace, kitchen, bathroom and laundry fans that evacuate to the roofspace. These are a huge offender for heat loss, duct them through the roof to the outside, seal around electrical and plumbing fittings etc, etc. You will still lose some of your heated air to the roofspace due to convectional heat transfer, however if you seal the ceiling of all protusions and stop all the air leaks you are going to cut that 27% down drastically.

While we are here I will tell you any heated air lost to the roofspace is just that LOST don’t get the idea that the heated air in the roofspace is going to help heat the house.

Once the heated air of the roofspace rises to the underside of the roof covering the moisture in the heated air will condense and become liquid – condensation of the roof cavity.

So seal the ceiling from all protusions and maintain a good percentage of your heating in winter, this will also see you for a cooler home in summer.

So it is your choice for the best most economically heating in winter, however you should choose wisely regarding your health and the health of your family. We should also keep in mind a sealed ceiling is also a healthy ceiling not allowing the nasties of the roospace to enter through the ceiling. To stop the nasties of the roofspace you will need to have an effective roof ventilation system.