Winter’s coming…and according to the Farmer’s Almanac, you’d better stock up on long johns and firewood. Especially if you’re east of the Rockies, predictions are, you are going to be hit hard! Pair that with rising energy costs, and your monthly home heating costs could go through the roof!
Here are 7 things you can do to help combat a cold house and make your thermostat happy:
1. Add A Down Filled Comforter
Down has always been the preferred insulator when worn or for bundling up while sleeping. Body heat is trapped between the little fluffs of down, creating a re-generating heat source that will keep you warm all night long. There are different weight levels available-some are even available with dual-zone comforters for bed partners with different sleeping temperature preferences! The best down originates from birds from the coldest climates, such as Hungarian or Siberian geese. Plus, using a duvet allows you to change your room’s look easily from season to season or from one style to another without having to reinvest in a quality insert.
2. Use A Humidifier
Cold, winter air is notoriously dry, often leaving your home’s humidity around 10%…far short of the ideal of 30-40% Having the correct humidity levels not only provides additional warmth to a house, but it also has many other benefits such as reducing allergens, reducing the risk of furniture damage, and controlling static electricity.
3. Change The Direction Of Your Ceiling Fans
Most fans spin and pull air up to the ceiling. By simply reversing the direction of your ceiling fan and pushing the rising heat back down into your living space, you can save as much as 10% on energy costs. Ceiling too high to manually change blade direction? This may be a good time to replace your fan with one with a built-in remote control.
4. Reinforce Cold, Drafty Areas
Windows — Take a candle or incense stick to the window on a breezy day. Move around the frame, inside and outside of the trim, and see if the smoke moves. If it does, you have a draft spot. Use paintable caulk for around the trim and silicone caulk outside if you can. There are window weatherstrips available at most home improvement stores as well. Insulating your window draperies can help keep the draft from entering the room as well.
Doors — The old, simple solution is a draft dodger-a fabric tube filled with sand or rice that lays along the bottom of your door. Etsy has some fun and stylish options. The best option, however, is to replace the weather stripping around your door, including the threshold strip.
5. Add Insulated Drapery Lining
DrapeStyle can help with this one! DrapeStyle offers insulated drapery lining, also called thermal lining, for all drapes and roman shades. It’s common for drafts to come in around windows. However, most pre-fabricated drapery panels available at most retailers, come with a simple, thin lining or with no lining at all. DrapeStyle’s custom drapes and roman shades include lining! Let us help you select the interlining that’s best for your climate. Interlining also adds body and weight to your drapes for a very luxurious, custom look. Our skilled workroom can add the following interlining to your drapes:
Flannel Interlining— Similar to the lightweight flannel sheets your grandma used, this supple lining goes between the face fabric and standard sateen lining. Flannel interlining has been shown to reduce heat loss by 25%.
Bump Interlining— Originally used in Europe’s cold-climate country homes, bump interlining offers the most insulation for cold and sound. It also gives a nice weight and drape to fine fabrics, such as silk.
6. Add Rugs To Bare Floors
Aside for the obvious (that rugs are warmer than tile or wood), wool rugs in particular are a natural insulator similar to down. They’re hypoallergenic, provide moisture, and are incredibly durable. Well-kept wool rugs can be handed down through generations. Even better than an area rug would be wall-to-wall wool carpeting.
7. Get An Energy Audit
An inexpensive (often subsidized-check with your local electric company) professional test for air leaks, insulation levels and other thermal performance factors is the best way to learn where the cold is getting into your house. They will give you tips and tricks to help keep the cold out, and often times will do the work themselves at a discounted fee. Click here for more information on audits.
So there you have it, 7 great ways to help keep the cold out this winter. Or, you could always take up baking, not only will the heat from the oven heat up your home, but the baked goods you hand out to neighbors and co-workers will get you off of Santa’s naughty list!