Meet Captain Cosy, the warm homes hero who will be giving you all of the information you need to keep cosy this winter.
Click on any of the titles below to open up a list of handy warm home hacks courtesy of Captain Cosy.
You can also find her on social media by searching for #CaptainCosy.
Warm Home Discount
Captain Cosy wants to share a number of schemes that can help with your energy bills this winter.
Cold Weather Payment - if it's very cold where you live (at or below 0 degrees) for a period of time, and you're receiving certain benefits, you may be eligible to receive £25 a week for each 7 day period of cold weather. For more information, visit HERE
Warm Home Discount - this is a discount on your electricity bill. You may be able to get it if you get Pension Credit or are on a low income. For more information, visit HERE
Winter Fuel Payment - this is an annual tax-free payment to help with heating costs for older people. Make sure you're registered to get it - once you are, you'll receive it every year without having to do anything. For more information, visit HERE
Be SMART With Energy
Smart meters are a great way to get you thinking about how you can power your homes for less and make them more efficient.
Captain Cosy recommends getting a smart meter fitted to help you keep cosy whilst keeping tabs on how much you are spending on gas/electric in the winter months.
The below link has a handy leaflet that will give you all the information you need to get in touch with your energy supplier. Get a Smart Meter installed and start saving money on your energy bills.
Click HERE to download
Avoid Frozen Water Pipes
Water pipes and condensate pipes can freeze up when cold weather hits.
Signs of this can be no running water or low water pressure water coming from your taps. Check with your neighbour to see if they have running water. If they do, it could be that your pipes are frozen.
Here are Captain Cosy’s top tips for how to deal with frozen water/condensate pipes:
- Find your internal stop valve, which controls the water coming into your home, and turn it off. They are usually found under the sink or under the stairs but if you’re a Trivallis customer and don't know where it is, get in touch with us and we will point you in the right direction.
- Drain the cold water system only by flushing the toilet and opening cold taps over sinks and baths.
- Check pipes for signs of damage and, if it’s safe and possible to do so, slowly thaw the frozen pipe with hot water bottles, or pour hot water – not boiling – heated by a kettle or a microwave over the end of the pipe where it is frozen using a suitable container like a watering can. Never use a naked flame or blowtorch to thaw a pipe.
- Once the pipe has thawed you should re-set your boiler by holding in the re-set button for 10 seconds and wait for the boiler to re-fire. Check the 'Your Boiler' section of this page for information on how to do this.
- Switch your stop tap back on and check your water is running properly again.
- If you are a Trivallis customer and are unsure of anything to do with your home or tenancy at any time, call us on 03000 030 888.
Risk of frozen pipes lowers if you lag your pipes (lagging material is available from most DIY stores).
If you're not going to be at home for a while, turn off the water at the stop valve and consider draining down the system so there is no water left in the pipes.
Don't forget, if you're a customer then let us know if you're leaving your home vacant for a while so we can give you advice on keeping it safe and secure.
Check out this video from British Gas with tips on how to that a frozen condensate pipe:
There are lots of different makes and models of boilers across our homes but essentially they all work in a similar way. If you are a Trivallis customer and find yourself without heating or hot water, it’s worth taking a quick look at your boiler before calling out Trivallis’ repairs team. It could be a simple matter of re-setting the controls.
Here are Captain Cosy’s top tips for what to do if your boiler stops working…
Error codes and what they mean:
• Baxi Boiler – E133 – CHECK GAS METER AND RESET BOILER
• Baxi Boiler – E119 – NO PRESSURE, TOPUP PRESSURE AND RESET BOILER
• Glow Worm Boiler – F1 + F4 – CHECK GAS METER AND RESET BOILER
• Vaillant Boiler – F28 + F29 – CHECK GAS METER AND RESET BOILER
• Vaillant Boiler – F22 – NO PRESSURE, TOP UP PRESSURE AND RESET BOILER.
Need to reset your boiler?:
• BAXI: turn the control dial from ‘ON’ to ‘R’ and then back to ‘ON’.
• GLOW WORM: turn the boiler off then back on again.
• VAILLANT: there is a reset button on the boiler that simply needs to be pressed.
Captain Cosy doesn’t want you to feel the cold this winter so if re-setting the boiler doesn’t work and you are a Trivallis customer, please call us on 03000 030 888 to arrange a repair call-out.
Be a Good Neighbour
When the cold weather hits, we’re all a little more vulnerable.
Captain Cosy is asking you to be a good neighbour and check on older people who live in your area to make sure they’re safe and well.
Public Health Wales suggests making sure they’re warm enough, especially at night, and have stocks of food and medicines so they don’t need to go out during very cold weather.