Do-it-yourself energy check will help save heat during chilly season
There are plenty of ways to heat colder parts of your home without raising the thermostat. Determining your heating needs on a room-by-room basis will help save energy in areas of the home that aren’t used frequently.
Start by doing a walk-through of your rooms to find out which areas are the coldest and why that is. Place a hand around the window edges to feel for drafts or cold spots. A full window replacement is probably not necessary, but adding an insulating plastic sheet over windows that aren’t used in winter can block any small drafts you may have. Insulation kits are readily available at home improvement stores. They’re an inexpensive item that will earn their purchase back in no time by cutting your utility bills.
If you have curtains or drapes on an unused window or placed on windows that are only used for part of the day, pull them closed to prevent the cold from entering the house. For windows with no coverings other than a shade, consider adding a coordinating curtain set that will help insulate the window.
More efficient heating
To compensate for keeping down the thermostat, many people find electric heaters fit their needs when trying to heat a small room or concentrating heat in part of a large room. There are many types of space heaters to choose from, but one model that many homeowners select is a low-profile heater. It can be placed unobtrusively on the floor and provide heat at this low level in the same way that baseboard heaters do.
Often equipped with timers and tip-over safety switches as features, these heaters offer convection heat that circulates warm air upward. Another benefit is that they work without fans, so there’s no sound to interfere with listening to music or TV. They can be transported easily wherever you need them with handy carry handles.
Even when using an efficient and compact space heater, keeping that precious warmth from escaping your home should be a priority throughout the cold months. Beyond doors and windows, keep the fireplace flue closed when no fire is burning and make sure that home features like recessed lighting, outlets and light switches are well insulated to block drafty spots around them.
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