With the return of snow, slush and arctic winds, it seems that everyone is feeling the chill. Turning up the heat in your home may be one solution for keeping warm, but did you know there are ways to heat your house without increasing your energy costs? Here are ten easy ways to warm up this winter without breaking the bank.
Install a Programmable Thermostat
Automatically warm your house in the evenings when you’re at home, and turn off the heat when you’re at work. Program it to kick in just before you get home and you’ll enjoy the toasty warmth of a heated house.
Move Large Furniture Away from the Radiator and Windows
If large furniture like couches are in front of the radiator, they can block the heat from spreading to the rest of the room. If furniture like desks and tables are too close to the window, you’ll feel the cold no matter what the temperature of your home. If you have very large furniture, like solid wooden wall-units or large entertainment systems, you can hire a moving company for a single-piece furniture move. Using padded blankets and industrial plastic wrap, you can be sure your furniture will be safe being moved from one room to another.
Draft-Proof Your Windows and your Doors
You hear that whistling noise coming from your window or your door? That means there’s a gap between the door and the frame. This gap allows heat to escape your home. You can hire a contractor to fix your doors, or go with a DIY solution and use stickable foam strips that can found at any local hardware store.
Use Throw Rugs
Bare floorboards without insulation can cause heat loss, and always feel chilly on your feet in the mornings. You can cover your floors with wall-to-wall carpet, or you can simply put down more throw rugs.
Keep the Fireplace Flue Closed
If you rarely use your fireplace, keep the flue closed to prevent heat from escaping up the chimney. You can also use something called a chimney balloon. Simply put the balloon up the chimney and inflate it. The balloon will block the chimney and help keep the warm air inside.
Buy Thick Curtains
Thick curtains, especially those with a thermal lining, will prevent the heat loss that occurs through your windows.
Keep Curtains Closed at Night and Open During the Day
Use those thick curtains at night when the air outside is cooler, but throw them open during the day to let the sun in for some natural heating.
Switch Your Ceiling Fan Clockwise
Some ceiling fans actually have a “winter” setting, making your fan switch from counter-clockwise in the summer to clockwise in the winter. Since heat rises, this motion will push the air down, warming the room as opposed to the ceiling.
Bake With the Oven More
Even if it’s not a conscious decision, most people avoid using the oven during the summer because it just gets too hot inside the house. Conversely, baking with the oven in the winter helps keep the house warm. You can’t barbeque outside in the winter, but you can whip up some delicious brownies!
Put on a Sweater
One of the best and easiest ways to keep warm in the winter has nothing to do with your home. Keeping yourself warm is key. If your body is warm, you won’t feel the cold inside your house. You’ll save on electricity costs by keeping the house cooler, and you won’t need to fight with the thermostat to get just the right temperature.
There’s no need to huddle under six layers of blankets and curse the winter season. Use these easy homeowner tips and you’ll welcome winter no matter what the weather throws at you.