Winter—it’s that time of the year again when drops in temperatures go to the negative degrees at the height of the season. Most people seek the solace of their homes when the weather is at its worst, but it’s not all that bad. There’s nothing cozier and more enjoyable than keeping yourself warm with a cup of cocoa or tea in your hand while in the company of your loved ones.

While it is ideal to turn on the heating all winter long and while it is expected for the bill to go up, it can be quite costly. Even turning the thermostat up can make a difference. If you’re looking for ways to keep your house warmer during the winter without crippling your bank account, read on below for tips.

Curtains Are Your Friends

The most natural and free way to get heat during the winter weather? The sun. Open your windows when it’s bright and sunny, not only to illuminate your room and get rid of the winter blues but also to let in whatever warmth it offers. After all, the sun doesn’t shine long during the season, so bask in it as much as you can.

Make use of your curtains this season by making sure that you have thick ones that can keep out the chill. It can be difficult to find the right curtain rods when you have curved windows, so get custom ones to make sure they are durable enough to support your winter curtains. The beauty of getting custom rods is that they are made to perfectly fit your windows and you can design them however you want.

Seal Air Leaks

Everyone knows that the cold of winter is all-encompassing and it can get anywhere it can. It is recommended to seal any air leaks you may have around your windows and to do that before winter comes. You can use caulk because it is cheap and doesn’t require any special instruction. Sealing your windows tight will not only keep out the cold but will also make sure that the heating in your house won’t escape easily, thereby adding savings to your energy bill.

Apart from windows, there may be other leaks around your house. If you have an attic and basement, it could be there as well. Install additional insulation or put caulk as necessary. If you want to learn more about how to seal and insulate those areas yourself, check out this informative website.

Close the Doors

If there is heating in the living spaces in your house, it makes sense to keep the heat trapped as much as you can. Close the doors to rooms you’re not using when you’re using the heater or the fireplace so these unoccupied rooms don’t suck out the valuable heat. The simple act of closing the door will make sure that the warm air will stay in place. If you don’t expect to use other rooms, make sure to turn off radiators so you don’t rack up a huge energy bill.

For doors that are the entrance to your house, it helps to keep the cold air away by putting a draft stopper underneath it. They are readily available in stores or if you want to make one of your own, here is a good tutorial on how to make it. You can also fashion temporary ones by using blankets and rugs.

Put Down Rugs

A manual but cost-efficient way to make sure that you’re not reminded that it’s freezing outside all the time is to put down rugs on floors. It can be jarring to walk over cold floors. Put down rugs on areas you always use to make it more comfortable for you, or at the very least, keep your toes warm until you put on footwear.

Leave Oven Door Open

It’s always nice to have something cooking and baking during the cold season. Not only does it make the house smell heavenly, but it is also a good source of warmth.  A good tip to adding warm air in the house is to open the oven after you’re done using it. The residual heat will help keep the chill away.

Insulate Water/Radiator Pipes

This is to ensure that any heat generated by these pipes goes toward keeping your home warm and not in some tiny crawl space or insignificant area. You can use pipe insulation for the exposed pipes. A shelf or a table over the radiator can also help trap heat and spread it through the room.

Use Space Heaters When Necessary

In extreme cold, it will be necessary to get everyone in the house in one room together to and use a space heater. It is important that you take care when using it because, while space heaters generate warmth, they are a high-risk fire hazard. According to the NFPA, heaters account for more than 40 percent of home fires in the US.

It can be tempting to just nap in the midst of the warmth of the space heater during a freezing winter day or night, but you must take precautions. Put the heater on a surface where it won’t topple over, and keep materials that may cause fire far away from it. It is ideal to put a timer on your space heater instead if you can’t trust yourself to turn it off yourself after using it. Here are other ways you can keep safe when using space heaters.

Old Blankets and Clear Shower Curtains for Extreme Emergencies

If you need something to reduce the heat loss in your home, you can duct-tape old blankets on your windows. Using old sheets will temporarily help keep the room warm. If you find that store-bought window-insulating-kit plastic is too thin for windows, you can use clear shower curtains instead. They’re great if you want to allow the sun in during the day while keeping the draft out.

Cuddling Is Important

The quickest and most foolproof way to get warm this winter is to cuddle. It is a good opportunity to bond with others, especially with your partner and/or pets. Apart from fleece or wool blankets, thick socks and clothing help you stay warm during sleep.

Published by rudds james