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6 Tips for Staying Warm When Your Boiler’s Broken Down

So your boiler’s broken down, you’ve called for a plumber and it’s time to sit tight and wait for them to ride to the rescue. Keeping warm while you wait for your heating to be back in working order can be a challenge.

With no radiators to heat your home, you’ll have to get creative and use other methods of staying warm safely. The good news is, there are plenty of little things you can do to ward away the chill and keep the temperature up, even with a broken boiler. You’ll more than likely do a few of these without thinking but we’ve summarised out top tips as a reminder for you when you do find yourself without a boiler!

Here are our 6 tips for staying warm when your boiler’s broken down:

Add Layers

First thing’s first, be sure to add some extra layers of clothing. You want to give yourself the best chance of keeping warm, and a few extra layers can do wonders.

Add layers

Each extra layer will help to insulate you from the cold and stop your body heat from escaping. With no central heating to keep you warm, you’ll need this insulation to make the most of any heat you do have.

Go all in with coats, hats and gloves for the best results. Even pull that old blanket out of the cupboard, every layer helps!

Close Your Curtains

It’s probable that the biggest source of heat loss from your home is through your windows. You’ll need to try and minimise this if you’re to stay warm with no central heating, and closing the curtains can be a big help.

Keeping your curtains closed, especially at night, can help stop heat escaping through your windows and retain the heat in a room. Blinds don’t have the same effect however, so there’s no substitute for a good, thick pair of curtains.

If it’s looking sunny during the day, you may want to open the curtains and let the light in. A little sun can help, even in the winter months, and keep your home warmer through the day (and sometimes a little bit of light just makes you feel warmer and happier!).

Close The Doors

It’s much easier to effectively heat one room, than to try and heat your whole home. Making sure you keep the doors closed can help retain heat in a room, rather than allowing it to fade away into the rest of your home.

Close the doors

Focusing on heating only the rooms that you need, when you need them, is much more efficient than attempting to heat everywhere. You’ll also be able to heat rooms much more quickly with the doors closed.

You could also use draft-excluders, or place towels along the bottom of your doors to further retain heat and stop warmth from escaping through the cracks. Little things like this can help your room stay just that bit warmer, and for longer.

Eat Warm Food

There’s nothing better than a warm, hearty meal in the middle of winter. This is even more true when your boiler’s broken.

Eat warm food

Warming yourself with food is a great way to stay toasty while you wait for a heating engineer. Your oven and hob should still be working, so use them to put together a hearty meal and keep yourself warm.

A mug of tea, coffee or hot chocolate is also a really useful idea for keeping your hands warm, even with gloves on. It can make you all the more comfortable while you wait for an emergency plumber.

Use Electric Heaters

Once you’ve done everything possible to retain heat, it’s time to find an alternative heating source that can heat your home while you wait for your heating to be back in action.

Using something like an electric heater can be expensive, but effective. Ensure that your doors are closed, windows are covered and that you’re wrapped up before turning the heater on. This will minimise the cost, and help your room warm up quicker. Heat only the rooms you need, while you’re using them and be sure not to leave heaters on overnight.

If you have another alternative heating source such as a wood burning stove or Aga, use this too to keep your house as warm as possible.

Boil Water

While you may not be able to get hot water from your central heating system, you can still boil it in a pan or kettle. Use water from your kettle to fill hot water bottles, wash up and take a bath. Just be sure to mix with a little cold water beforehand, ensuring that your water isn’t too hot.

Like using electric heaters, boiling water in this way isn’t particularly energy efficient, but it’s only a short term solution and will certainly keep you warm.

In Summary

Staying warm while you’re waiting for emergency boiler repairs can be difficult, especially in the middle of winter. Making sure you follow these 6 tips should keep you as warm and comfortable as possible until your boiler is working again.

As long as you pile on the layers, retain as much heat as possible and make some hearty food, you’ll be ready to ride out the cold.

It’s also worth noting that, for some people, having no boiler can be harmful to your health if you have trouble dealing with colder conditions - so in this case, you need to make your personal situation clear to your engineer or plumber so that they can work with you to get your central heating up and running as quickly as possible.

If you want to find out more about what to do when your boiler breaks down, read our guide.

At, we’re ready to take your call 24/7, 365 days a year and aim to be with you within 60 minutes for your boiler emergency. If your boiler is broken and in need of urgent repairs, just get in touch with our friendly customer service team on 0333 577 0151.

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