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Summer cold spell drives millions to switch on heat

uSwitch poll finds 8 million British households turned on their central heating last week — was yours one of them?

A recent spat of winter-like weather had three in 10 Brits — about 8 million households — turning up the thermostat this month, a recent uSwitch poll found.

Another 4.6 million considered cranking up the heat as an early-August cold spell brought temps down to single digits in some parts of the country.

Atypical summer weather

Throughout Europe a heat wave dubbed ‘Lucifer’ spiked temps into the mid 40s, causing chaos and triggering red alerts in Spain and southern France.

But those in Great Britain suffered a cold snap that pushed the temperature in some regions as low as 2 degrees celsius — and pushed many to dig out the winter coats and wooly jumpers just one month into summer.

In more normal summer conditions, 33% those polled said they would wait until the end of the summer school holidays or until the clocks turned back to touch the thermostat.

Winter is coming …

With so many reaching for the central heat this early and the recent price hike from British Gas, 32% are already fretting about the impact cold weather will have on their energy bills this season.

So, while higher temps are predicted for this week and winter once again feels farther away,  energy expert Claire Osborne warns households it’s not too early to start thinking about the energy bill:

“Energy prices continue to rise, and we know that over a third of bill payers are already worrying about the cost of keeping warm over the winter,” said  Osborne.

“With so many people giving into the cold and turning the heating on, households could find their annual bill gets a lot larger than expected. But shopping around now and switching to a better [energy] deal, before even colder weather bites, could save hundreds of pounds – enough to cover the expense of already having the heating on.”

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