Monday 18th October 2021
Liquid Gas UK, the trade association for liquefied petroleum gas (LPG), in encouraging users of LPG for heating to prepare for winter by checking their boilers and ensuring their LPG tanks are full prior to the change in seasons.
This year’s warning comes as the health risks of a cold winter are expected to be more severe with Covid-19, emphasising the need for people to ensure they keep their homes warm and dry. By preparing in advance and topping up their tanks in readiness, consumers can keep themselves, and those around them, safe during the colder months.
George Webb, Chief Executive of Liquid Gas UK, said: “This year the UK has experienced several extremes in weather; heavy rain and flooding at the start of the year followed by a warm and changeable summer. This winter could prove equally extreme. While we cannot be sure what to expect, it is important that LPG consumers are prepared for whatever the winter may throw at us this year.
We continue to have the added pressure of the Coronavirus, and while the vaccination has helped with the numbers of people getting seriously ill, it is still very much out there and with potential to cause more problems as the weather gets colder. All of these factors add to the importance of consumers having a reliable and consistent source of energy to heat their homes.
It’s vital consumers act now to ensure their equipment is working efficiently. They can do this by making sure their boiler and other gas appliances are serviced annually by a Gas Safe registered engineer, who can also advise on replacing a boiler if it is more than 15 years old to ensure ultimate efficiency.
If consumers don’t have an automatic top up facility with their LPG tank we would strongly advise they make enquires about whether they are able to have one installed. If this isn’t possible then it goes without saying that we advise they top up during the summer months and before the weather starts to change.”
For homeowners who live off the gas grid, LPG is a reliable and convenient fuel that acts in the same way as mains gas but is piped from a tank or cylinder generally located in the garden, delivered by suppliers based across the UK.
Demand for the off-grid fuel is at its highest during winter and with LPG delivered via road, unexpected and severe weather conditions can cause disruption to normal delivery patterns. Liquid Gas UK is therefore urging consumers to check that they have a full tank of fuel as the colder months approach to minimise the chance of disruption to supply.
Commenting on the importance of preparing for winter, George Webb, CEO of Liquid Gas UK continued:
“Over half of UK LPG households have an automatic ‘top up’ system which monitors the gas level within the tank and means that gas suppliers can proactively fill them up. Consumers who don’t have a ‘top up’ system arranged with their supplier, need to check their tank levels as soon as possible or when the tank level reaches 30%.
LPG users need to monitor their tank during the winter period to make sure they do not run their tanks down to critically low levels, especially now with many working from home, and that they order in plenty of time.”
Liquid Gas UK and its members work closely with the Government, devolved administrations and local authorities during winter to ensure LPG can be delivered as efficiently as possible, whatever the weather. All Liquid Gas UK members agree to the principles set out in the Customer Charter, which includes a Cold Weather Priority Initiative.
Top ten tips for getting ahead of winter:
1. Check your LPG levels – if you order LPG yourself please look at the tank level now and consider ordering from your supplier as soon as possible. Going into winter with a full tank will be more cost effective, provide peace of mind and it means that when it turns cold you needn’t worry about your energy supply.
2. Check if you are on an automatic top up system with your LPG supplier - you may already be on an automatic top up system and your LPG supplier will take account your needs and top up your tank when you need it - but if you aren’t on this system, you may want to check if this service is available to you.
3. Give your boiler a service – make sure your boiler and any other gas appliances are serviced every year by a Gas Safe registered engineer. This ensures that they run at their most efficient and are kept in tip-top condition.
4. Bleed your radiators - bleed your radiators to release any air that is trapped in them. This will improve your heating efficiency instantly as hot water can flow into every part of the radiator, so it does a better job of warming your room.
5. Draft-proof your home – draughty external doors are responsible for 15% of heat loss in the home. Draft-proofing is a cheap and easy way to prevent heat loss. Hanging thick curtains over the door will also help to trap heat inside. Close all the curtains as soon as it gets dark to prevent heat escaping through windows.
6. Insulate – loft insulation is a straightforward job which will dramatically cut the heat loss from your home. Also insulate your hot water tank by fitting it with a thick jacket – the thicker the better – this can reduce heat loss by up to 75%.
7. Use a programmer – use a programmer to set when the heating and hot water come on and go off based around your routine. By heating your home and hot water only when necessary, you'll save energy and money.
8. Lower your thermostat - lowering your thermostat setting by just 1°C could save you money, however, ensure that a minimum temperature is maintained of 21°C in living rooms and 18°C in bedrooms.
9. Consider replacing your boiler – if your boiler is 15 years old or more it could be time to replace it. Make sure you choose an energy efficient condensing boiler which could cut your heating bills significantly and achieve running efficiencies of 90%.
10. Check your pipes – check all pipework to ensure that there are no leaks, fix any drips and lag pipes to avoid bursts.
For more advice on how to prepare for winter, please visit https://www.liquidgasuk.org/advice/get-ahead-for-winter or search #GetAheadForWinter on Twitter.
For more information on the LPG industry Customer Charter, visit https://www.liquidgasuk.org/advice/liquid-gas-uk-customer-charter
The trade association for the LPG and bioLPG industry in the UK