During this cost of living crisis, people are understandably looking for ways to save money on heating and still keep their homes warm and families protected.
One popular tip on social media at the moment is placing a sheet of tin foil behind radiators in order to reflect heat back into the room which one creator described as a ‘cosy cost cutter’.
But does putting tin foil behind a radiator actually work and is it safe?
Of course, with any hacks around heating the home, it’s vital to ensure that they’re fire-safe and won’t put our homes at risk. With this in mind, HuffPost UK spoke with Chris Wagstaff, the director of health and safety at Croner.
While he doesn’t advise against using foil, he does urge homeowners to use caution, saying: “Using foil behind radiators may seem a good idea to save costs, but over time this foil can oxidise and break down.
“If the damaged foil isn’t replaced or is used at too high of a heat, this could potentially cause the foil to burn or start smouldering”.
While some creators are recommending just using tin foil, Wagstaff urges that not all tin foils are made equally.
He said: “The tin foil found in most kitchens and used for baking is not designed for this purpose and should never be placed behind radiators.
“Kitchen tin foil will degrade and oxidise more easily than specially designed radiator foil, it’s also likely to crinkle and not stay in place as intended, thereby becoming ineffective very quickly and heightening the risk”.
Fortunately, there is a kind of foil specifically made for placing behind radiators and it can be found in DIY shops or home shops like B&M for less than £10.
Finally, Wagstaff issues a warning to homeowners about potential fire risks and home insurance liability: “Using radiators not as intended also brings with it additional risks, not least of which could be invalidating your home insurance should a fire occur and it be found that you have made modifications such as using tin foil to reflect heat”.
Brb, just putting the tin foil back in the kitchen drawer.