The cold of winter has fully arrived and naturally, the easiest thing for many homeowners to do is turn up their central heating. But more heat = higher monthly bills. So instead of cranking that thermostat up, try implementing some of the useful tips we’ve shared below to keep your house warm and save a few bucks along the way.
Utilize Space Heaters. Space Heaters are a great tool to keep individual rooms warm, instead of heating an entire house. First, you want to make sure that your heater is on an even and stable surface in whichever room you will be producing the extra heat. Second, it’s a good idea to keep any flammable material at least three feet away from the space heater itself. Lastly, ensure that you remember to shut it off whenever you leave your home. We recommend heaters that shut off automatically if tipped over, because it’s better to be safe instead of sorry, trust us.
Move furniture away from vents and radiators. This may sound like a typical solution when winter comes around, but many times a couch, chair, or bed moved during the summer stays there in the winter, blocking the flow of heat into the room. This in turn wastes money and leaves us with cold rooms. Plus, when you have a forced-air system, blocking vents can cause a house-wide pressure imbalance that disrupts the heat flow in the whole system. So get up and move some furniture around!
Change the rotation of your ceiling fans. Set your fans to rotate clockwise in the winter and make sure to keep them turning at a lower speed. This drives warm air trapped at the ceiling back down towards the floor. Some ceiling fans may even have a “winter” setting you can activate with the simple switch of a button, so check your fans for this feature as it makes rotating a whole lot easier.
Install a smart thermostat. This is a great way to keep your bill low, and efficiency high. It’s convenient and eliminates the need to manually fiddle with your thermostat every time you leave the house. You’re able to program it with specific temperatures that change according to what you want, when at home or out. Keeping temps higher in the morning is best and once you’ve left you can program them to drop. Then, simply have the thermostat switch back to a comfortable temperature when you’re ready to come home. This is a great way to ensure your heating does not turn on without you being there. The Nest is one of the most popular smart thermostats on the market. It offers many useful features and syncs with your smartphone, giving you the control to change temperature from pretty much anywhere you may be.
Add layers to your floor. This one’s not as obvious. If your wood floors are not insulated, it can result in your home losing about 10% of its heat. Carpets and rugs were created to make rooms warmer, and are able to trap in heat much better than wooden floors. We highly recommend to add a rug or carpet this winter to keep that heat indoors!
Close off unused rooms. Keeping doors closed to rooms you are not utilizing helps contain heat in ones that you do. Also, make sure to close vents in unused rooms to ensure heat gets directed to the areas you frequent most. This method helps prevent cold air from moving into the rest of the house. If you want to keep one room extra toasty, close the door and run a small space heater!
Keep your curtains closed at night. Another great way to keep heat from escaping through your windows when nighttime rolls around is closing the drapes. If you do not have drapes on your windows, a smart move would be to invest in some as they are capable of sealing in more heat.
But, let sunlight in during the day. At night you want to keep those drapes closed, but during the day you want to make sure to utilize all of that free heat radiating from the sun! Leave your drapes open in rooms where sunlight usually streams through and enjoy instant warmth!
Limit your shower usage. Showers are a great way to keep us warm when we’re feeling chilly at home. However, you don’t want your heating bill to go down just to have your water bill shoot up. This is the moment to time yourself when taking showers or invest in a low flow shower head.
Sometimes, the best option is simply keeping the person warm vs. the house. Layer up with sweatpants and a sweatshirt, pull out some blankets, sip on hot tea or lounge in your robe. The extra layers keep you warm and in turn let you lower your temperature. Don’t get too carried away now, we don’t want anyone resorting to wearing a jacket at home. So, keep those lowered temps comfortable!