Millions of Brits will be reaching for the thermostat sooner rather than later as chilly nights start to creep in.

And everyone has their own habits and theories about how to keep the bills down whilst staying toasty during cold autumn evenings.

Reports in the Mirror claim that the pandemic is set to add more than £100 to gas and electric bills this winter as millions of Brits are forced to stay home.

Workers are still being told to do their shifts remotely, and swathes of the country face tough lockdown restrictions that will mean more time at home.

So with bills looking likely to cost more than usual, when should you swap jumpers and blankets for a piping hot radiator?

Money experts at energy savings company Utility Bidder estimate that Sunday October 23 will be the day the nation caves, and turns the heating on.

They added to the Mirror: “There’s no specific temperature at which you should be turning on your heating, as it will depend on how well insulated your home is (and what your ideal temperature is!).

"Better insulated homes will be able to keep warmer, even as the temperature outdoors cools, so every home will be different. However, the most effective way to control your heating is to use a room thermostat that is set between 18 and 21°C."

Experts say the idea that it is cheaper to leave the heating on a low setting all day is an old wives tale – it will cost you more in the long run.

That is due to the heat loss caused by the difference between the temperature outside and the temperature you’re trying to keep inside.

Instead, it is best to have the heating on when you need it.

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In the long run, that is the best way to save energy and, as a result, hard earned cash.

A timer for your thermostat is the easiest way to ensure your home is nice and toasty at the right times.

How to keep your home warmer for longer

Don’t block radiators: Avoid putting the sofa in front of the radiator as it will absorb a lot of heat, preventing it from warming up the rest of the house.

Seal your doors: Whack draught-excluding foam or rubber tape around your doors and any other cracks where the draught comes in. You can buy these for around a fiver.

Make a rice sock: Instead of spending £20 on a shop bought hot water bottle, fill a sock with rice and lavender, tie the end and you have your own hand warmer. It's a pretty efficient way of getting heat into something – certainly more energy efficient than boiling a kettle full of water.

Shut the curtains: Keeping them closed is a clever – and easy – way to keep the warmth locked in. Consider investing in thermal curtains for the rooms you use the most.

Wrap up warm: It goes without saying but the more layers you have on, the warmer you'll feel.

Bleed your radiator: 'Bleeding radiators' is when you let out air that has become trapped inside. Trapped air causes the radiators to have cold spots, reducing the efficiency of them. You can bleed your radiators yourself.

Turning down the thermostat: Turning it down by 1 degree could cut your heating bills by up to 10% and save you around £85 a year according to Energy-uk.org.

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