What Is The Ideal Room Temperature in the UK?

James Elston
Written by James Elston
Updated on 7th May 2024
Posted on 6th May 2024
What Is The Ideal Room Temperature For Your Home

Find the ideal room temperature for your home here

ideal room temperature

It’s tough deciding the ideal room temperature, especially for those who live in a house where one person likes it toasty warm and the other prefers a cool, fresh breeze.

But there are guidelines for the best temperature for your home, both from a health and comfort point of view as well as for energy efficiency too.

Perhaps you’ve been told it’s energy-saving to keep your central heating on at all times through the winter, or maybe you’ve heard that 18°C is the ideal bedroom temperature for a night of restorative sleep.

Therefore, in this guide, we’ll provide all the answers needed to work out the ideal bedroom temperature, busting myths and presenting facts where relevant.

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What is the ideal temperature for a room?

What is the ideal room temperature for your home?

Ideal room temperature depends on a number of factors, from age through to the type of room, for example, living rooms are generally places we rest and sit still, therefore, a living room needs to be a slightly higher temperature than say a kitchen.

But before we get into the intricacies, let’s explore average household temperatures to work out what temperature we should set our thermostat and why it is so important to ensure your boiler controls are working all year round.

If you are unsure on how your boiler controls work, read our guide on how to use a central heating thermostat first to help you with setting the perfect temperature any time of the day.

Indoor temperature guidelines:

•            18C–21C — Comfortable temperature

•            Higher than 24C — Cardiovascular risk

•            Lower than 12C — Cardiovascular risk

•            18C — Minimum for Comfort

•            12C–16C — Respiratory risk

•            9C — Hypothermia risk

If you are unsure about what is a comfortable room temperature for the rooms in your home or what is the average room temperature is, we are always here to help whether you need programmable heating control help, a new boiler or a one-off repair.

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What is the minimum room temperature you should have in your home?

A temperature below 16 degrees is now recommended as too low for the UK room temperature, but if you are under 65, you can drop down to around 16 degrees if this makes you more comfortable. 

Central heating temperatures for the elderly will be different from normal house temperatures. Consequently, it is recommended that if you are over 65 years old or have an illness, the room temperature should not drop below 18 degrees.

Does that mean that 16 degrees is too low?

No, this means that 16 degrees is the the minimum temperature in an ideal world. 15 degrees or below is when problems can occur; therefore, it is not recommended to keep rooms at this temperature or below for long periods of time if it can be helped.

What is considered a reasonable working temperature?

While there is no legally defined maximum or minimum temperature for workplaces, health and safety recommendations suggest that a suitable temperature should typically be no lower than 16°C. However, if the job requires significant physical activity, a minimum of 13°C may be adequate.

The definition of “reasonable” can vary based on the nature of the workplace and the tasks performed. For instance, the expected temperatures can differ in environments like bakeries, offices, warehouses, or cold storage facilities.

Should you heat different rooms separately?

The room temperature is usually around 20degC or 68° Fahrenheit. While this is an ideal temperature to aim at, it is important that you remember that different rooms may need to be heated to achieve specific temperatures.

In terms of the main areas of your home such as heating living rooms, 20-22 degrees Celsius is a good idea since this is where you will be spending most of your time. It is also a belief that to aid concentration, offices should also be heated to this temperature.

You should keep spaces that people spend less time in, like corridors, laundry rooms, and lofts, slightly cooler than usual living spaces therefore the ideal temperature is between 15 and 18 degrees Celsius.

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What temperature is too cold for a house in the UK?

The cold temperature in your home is classed as 16 °C or less; this will not be a comfortable house temperature.

You would be uncomfortable trying to get warm, and restless and you will more than likely struggle to get to sleep, leaving you tired, not refreshed, and grumpy the next day.

Nobody wants to have to ice-cold feet or feel like their poor nose is going to fall off when they are trying to sleep and the optimal room temperature is more important than you think. If you think your boiler is the issue then you should consider a boiler replacement.

What is the average house temperature?

Studies have shown that the average room temperature in the UK is 18°C, and what’s interesting, however, is that UK residents think the optimum room temperature is between 20 and 22°C.

What is the ideal room temperature for your home?

The best combi boilers and best system boilers can maintain both of these temperatures very efficiently. But it’s worth noting that if you’re in the 20–22°C group, you may be overpaying on bills.

Reducing what is your normal room temperature by altering the thermostat settings by one or two degrees can make a huge difference to your energy usage.

However, If you still seem to be paying over the odds for energy, you may need a new boiler, especially if yours is old and inefficient. An energy-efficient combi boiler can save you up to £880 on your energy bills every year.

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What is the ideal bedroom temperature in the UK for sleeping?

Achieving the correct room temperature is extremely important to ensure that you create the best sleep environment, as it has been shown good sleep impacts your health, skin, concentration levels, and general well-being.

The Sleep Council confirms that your body heat reaches its maximum temperature in the evening, and then your body temperature drops to its lowest levels when you are sleeping.

To ensure your body can achieve the temperature it needs for restful sleep, ensure your room temperature for sleeping is between 16 °C to 18 °C for a bedroom. For those over 65, you’ll want to stick to 18°C and not let it drop below.

The older we get, the less our body needs to cool at night, therefore the healthiest bedroom temperature is slightly higher for those in their later years.

Over 24 °C is too hot for your bedroom if you want to be comfortable and wake up feeling revived, refreshed and bouncing out of bed ready for a busy day at work.

Does the ideal room temperature change for summer and winter? 

What is the ideal room temperature for your home?

The weather outside has a major impact on a good room temperature throughout your home.

The wind could be blowing and affecting one side of the house more than the other. Therefore you need to alter one side of the house temperature but not the other.

You wouldn’t want to do both and waste energy and make the energy bill bigger when this is not necessary. This is why it is a great idea to have a thermostat to keep an eye on temperature fluctuating and also have the availability for you to be able to change the temperature to what suits your body at that time or that day.

Compare the latest smart thermostats in our Hive vs Nest thermostat review now for optimum control over your room temperature.

In the living room or the living areas, you will more than likely alter the thermostat to higher degrees than you would have in the bedroom as this is your time to relax and be cosy.

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How to heat your home economically

Heating a house is an expensive monthly expense, especially in colder months and even more so now with the steep rise in gas prices. Therefore, it is important to find ways to heat your home more efficiently.

People try to do this by turning off their central heating in unoccupied rooms and when they are not home and although this may reduce your costs in the short term it can lead to many problems so a thermostatic radiator valve is likely a better solution.

One reason to maintain a reasonable temperature is mould growth can be increased in homes that are too cold.

This is because cold air condenses less water vapour on walls and windows, and as you can imagine, mould can be unpleasant to deal with, and it can also cause health problems if not treated. 

If not managed properly, mould can cause damage to your property and may cost you a lot to get rid of.

There are many ways to heat your home more efficiently other than controlling your boiler temperature and central heating, which include double-glazing, better insulation and switching energy suppliers, however, a smart thermostat or digital thermostat is one way to improve the ambient temperature.

A smart thermostat digital thermostat lets you set temperatures at specific times and you can also invest in the best smart thermostats that control separate zones in your home which allows you to manage the temperature in each room, and even consider the weather if you have a weather compensation kit. This way, you can control when your home is heated and save money.

Best ways to keep warm at lower room temperatures

Although, everybody is different and if you like to be energy-saving and keeping the bills low, you may take advantage of the smart meter or the thermostats and play with the temperature dropping and wearing more layers. The living room temperature in the UK is recommended to be higher than your bedroom temperature.

What is the ideal room temperature for your home?

Extra blankets, suitable warm sleepwear, and the correct tog or heavier duvet weight will bring further comfort and energy saving in the cold Winters.

Whilst aiming for the recommended bedroom temperature in the UK, which is 18, 19  or 20°C. The higher the duvet tog rating, the warmer and cosier you will be.

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What room temperature is best in summer?

In Summer, you may need to alter the thermostat, open your window, lower the weight of your duvet and switch your heating off to drop the temperature down to the recommended 18 or 19 °C.

The best tog for your duvet depends on the time of year, in Spring and Summer a 2.5 to 7 tog will keep you comfortable whereas in Autumn and Winter 10.5 to 14.5 will keep you at the ideal temperature.

You can also purchase all-weather duvets which allow you to clip thinner duvets together or separate them depending on the temperature outside.


What is the ideal room temperature for pregnancy?

Many women report feeling hotter during pregnancy. It is important to stay cool and hydrated when pregnant, both for your health and your baby’s health. 

There is no set ideal room temperature, but we would recommend testing different levels of central heating to find a temperature that is comfortable for you. However, on the other hand, if you are concerned about the heating in your home during pregnancy, then it is always a good idea to seek medical advice.

What is the ideal room temperature for pets?

The ideal temperature for pets will completely depend on the pet in question. For example, a long-haired husky dog will need a lower temperature than for rabbits or Siamese cats.

If you feel cold though, it is likely that your pets will too, so always ensure that you take care of them and provide them with warmth when required and like most humans, pets are happy with the temperature between 20-22 deg C

How does the ideal room temperature vary for homes with infants or very young children, and what are the safest temperature ranges to ensure their comfort and health?

For homes with infants or young children, maintaining a slightly warmer temperature is often recommended for their comfort and health, usually around 18-20°C, but it’s essential to monitor children’s responses and adjust accordingly for their safety.

Are there energy-efficient alternatives to traditional heating methods that can help maintain the ideal room temperature without significantly increasing energy bills?

Energy-efficient alternatives such as programmable thermostats, improved insulation, and using heat pumps can help maintain comfortable temperatures without significantly increasing energy bills, by optimising heating schedules and reducing heat loss.

How do outdoor temperatures and seasonal changes affect the ideal indoor temperature, and what adjustments are recommended to adapt to these changes while ensuring comfort and energy efficiency?

Outdoor temperatures and seasonal changes do affect ideal indoor temperatures. During colder months, a warmer indoor setting is preferred, while in warmer seasons, a cooler setting may be more comfortable.

Adjustments should be made to adapt to these changes while aiming for energy efficiency, such as using curtains to insulate or ventilate as needed.

For more guidelines and advice, check out our boiler advice hub, filled with tips for heating your home and guidance on boilers and central heating.

We also offer great low cost boiler deals, cheap boilers and next day boiler installation with a fixed price, all aimed to get you up and running in 24 hours!

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Written by
James Elston
James Elston Director Of Boiler Central
Posted on: 6th May 2024

James Elston is our resident boiler replacement and heating expert here at Boiler Central. With over 20 years experience in the boiler installation industry, James ensures that he knows everything there is about our Gas Safe boiler installations, energy saving and home heating solutions. This can be from simply procuring the latest best combi boilers, to reviewing and ensuring that Boiler Central maintains the highest standards across our boiler installation company.

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