Britain a Nation of Secret Heaters

13 October 2015

  • 1 in 4 Brits are secret heaters, OVO finds, with nearly a quarter of the nation turning on the heating before winter without telling their partners
  • Nearly three quarters of us resist the call of the boiler switch with slippers and extra layers
  • 20 per cent of us snuggle up with someone to keep warm instead of giving in to the heating system
  • October 16th is the day of the year most of us will turn on our heating for winter

With the weather cooling down, households across the nation are gearing up to reignite their love affairs with their radiators.

New research into the nation’s habits around the start of winter has been carried out by ethical energy company OVO. The data reveals that most of us are resisting the pull of the boiler, and getting creative to avoid flicking that switch. 71 per cent of us wrap up in extra layers, hoping slippers and a jumper will keep the cold at bay for another couple of weeks, and a quarter of the nation (25 per cent) snuggle up to a partner instead of the radiator.

In-depth data generated by OVO, which runs off a convenient app that links to a smart-meter in customer’s homes, shows that the day the majority of us first turn on the heating is October 16th. However, sneaky Brits are revealed to be serial secret heaters, with nearly a quarter of us secretly turning on the heating without telling a partner.

The biggest reason those polled gave for avoiding turning on the heat was not knowing the cost of heating a home for the evening and fearing it would be expensive (54 per cent). The OVO app allows people to see exactly where they’re spending their money on energy, and provides either a monthly billing system or handy pay as you go model, both topped up through the app. The sad news is, the app means the end of secret heaters, as all household members linked to the app will be able to monitor energy usage!

Justin Haines, Customer Service Director, at OVO commented:

“It’s something we all grapple with as the cold sets in – when do we turn on the heating? Our data suggests that today is the day for most of the nation, but we’ve also identified an movement of secret heaters, who turn up the heat without their partners knowing. People worry about the cost of heating, but most are unaware that they can save hundreds of pounds by doing something as simple as switching their energy supplier.”


About OVO Energy

Headquartered in Bristol, OVO Energy, the 10th fastest private growing business in the UK, is one of the leading independent suppliers in the UK energy retail market. OVO was founded in 2009 by Stephen Fitzpatrick who set out to create a better energy company. Since entering the market in 2009, OVO currently has nearly 500,000 customers, created over 900 jobs and become the only Which? recommended energy provider.

OVO’s guiding principles are simplicity, transparency and fairness in all of its operations: making the energy industry easier for consumers to understand and making sure prices reflect the actual cost of doing business so customers know they’re getting a good deal.