Try these clever hacks for making and keeping rooms warm this winter.
1. Change the furnace filter.
Filters get clogged with dust and pet hair. Dirty filters make your furnace work harder and less efficiently. They also impact your home’s indoor air quality. Replace your filters when they are dirty to help air circulate freely.
2. Move your furniture.
Furniture can block heat from getting into the room. Moving a couch, chair or table away from radiators or vents can help heat to flow freely. Pro Tip: Put foil behind the radiator to reflect the heat into the room.
3. Layer your bedding.
The order of the sheets and blankets on your bed can affect how warm you feel. Put sheets on first, followed by a lightweight fluffy blanket. Finish it off with a thick, dense blanket on top. This will create a heat barrier, keeping the warmth in. Add a hot water bottle by your feet for added comfort.
4. Let the sun in.
Open your curtains and let the sunshine in on sunny days. This will help to warm your home, but remember to protect against UV Rays. Then close those curtains at night to keep the heat in. Choose a heavier fabric for winter curtains to provide an extra layer of warmth.
5. Cover your windows and drafty openings.
Create a barrier between drafts and your home. Cover windows with bubble wrap. Just cut a piece to the outer edges, spray the window with water, and press the wrap firmly. Stop mini-drafts from mail slots and doggy doors with old towels. Use draft stoppers under doors. For more ideas, see our blog on Winter Window Hacks.
6. Boost your ducts.
If you have forced-air heat, you can use duct booster fans to increase the flow of air. Some plug into outlets; others are hard-wired. Just know that cheaper ones can be noisy.
7. Reverse ceiling fans.
Most ceiling fans have a switch that allows you to easily change their direction. In colder months, make sure your fan is moving clockwise. Run your fan on low and it will push the warm air downward where it’s needed.
8. Use shower steam.
Leave the bathroom door open when you’re showering. The warm steam will travel through the house. Similarly, a boiling kettle will help warm your kitchen.
9. Leave the oven door open.
After baking, leave the oven door open slightly. The heat will help warm the kitchen. A word of advice: If you have small children, pets or elderly house guests, make sure the kitchen is securely closed off and that your charges are under constant supervision while the oven is open.
10. Use a dryer to warm items.
Put your pajamas in the dryer for a few minutes before bed and you’ll be wrapped in toasty comfort. You can also use this trick for blankets, mittens, scarves, and hats.
11. Use a fireplace plug.
You can lose a lot of heat through your fireplace if there are loose dampers. Try a fireplace draft stopper to seal the flue. Be sure to measure first so you get the right fit.
12. Make your own heater.
You can transform terra cotta pots into a makeshift room heater with candles and a few other supplies. Learn how in this video, and make sure to take safety precautions if you live with children or pets. This heater can get hot and should not be left unattended.
13. Add some rugs.
Heat can escape through your floorboards, and cold can come up from your floor, especially if it is uninsulated. Cover your floors with some rugs to provide an extra layer of warmth right under your feet.
14. Use outlet insulators.
If you’re feeling a slight chill when you go to plug into your electric outlets, you’re not imagining it. Cold can come through those small openings. Pick up some outlet insulators at your local hardware store. These foam sheets are installed right behind the face plate to block drafts.
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