Winter is here, and with it comes the usual drudgery of waking up to cold, gloomy weather. Certainly walking on cold tiles and shivering away after a shower are not good ways to start your morning. While it may be tempting to crank up the heating in times like these, there are cheaper and easier ways to properly winterize your home this year. In less than a weekend, you can not only make your house significantly cozier, but you can also greatly reduce your heating bill and energy emissions.
Block Draughty Doors
According to Style by Carden Exteriors, a lot of heat, as much as 30%, can be wasted through the gaps within doors.. Fixing this problem, however, is actually remarkably easy, all you need to do is find a way to cover up the gaps through which the heat escapes. This can be done either by installing rubber draught blocks to the bottom of your doors, or more cheaply by making a draught snake to press along the floor. Such snakes can either be bought at any home improvement store, or else made by hand with any scraps of cloth you may have lying around the house. This method goes all the way back to the Great Depression, and certainly does its part to help keep your home warm.
Blanket the Water Heater
Nowadays you can actually buy a specialized cover that fits over your water heater, which helps keep it from cooling down too quickly whenever the water is switched off. It also means you don’t have to run the heating on as high of a temperature, as the blanket helps the heater better regulate its temperature during colder weather. You can pick up covers for as little as $15 at most hardware stores, so it’s an investment that will quickly start to pay for itself.
Winterize Your AC
As you won’t be needing your AC unit anymore, feel free to drain any hoses and air conditioner pipes, and make sure that there isn’t any water pooling anywhere. Doing so can help keep your house a little warmer, as well as save you some cash. If you have any window-mounted units, be sure to remove them and store them away safely. This will prevent draughts from getting in past the gaps in the windows.
Set the Ceiling Fans to Turn Clockwise
You may not realize it, but your fans do actually spin the other way around. This, not coincidentally, is another fantastic way to winterize your home. Heat rises, and as such warm air has the habit of collecting by the ceiling and staying there. By spinning your fan blades clockwise, your fans push down warm air that collects at the ceiling, making the room warmer rather than cooler. This can cut down your heating costs by as much as 10%!
Cook at Home More Often
Avoid the temptation to go out for meals, or to order a take out. Your oven and microwave can both help heat up your home as you cook, and as such, they are excellent alternatives to running your heater. People who cook must have certainly noticed how stuffy the kitchen gets while fixing up food. If your kitchen is adjoined to a dining room or the lounge area, consider closing all doors that lead to other sections of the house, to better keep the heat trapped in one place.
Draw the Curtains at Night and Open Them During the Day
Prevent heat from escaping through the windows by drawing the curtains closed each night, and by installing netting over them. During the day, make sure you open the curtains as well. This will allow more sunlight to seep into the house, and this will gradually warm it up throughout the day with no cost at all to you.
Install More Efficient Heaters
If you’re willing to splurge a little, consider installing a newer, more efficient heater. Older models in particular tend not to have as high an energy efficiency when it comes to heating the home, getting it upgraded or replaced may not be a bad investment. While it’s certainly expensive sometimes, doing so will quickly save money. You’ll no longer need to raise the temperature quite as high, nor use quite as much fuel in the process.
The author, Christian Mills, is a blogger living in the Central Florida area. Part of his blog is dedicated to finding home improvement solutions for his audience, which is why he recommends Facemyer Air Conditioning and Heating his readers for all their ac and heating needs.