As the days get shorter and grow colder we all start thinking of ways we can keep the house warm. Typically we first go to turn up the thermostat on the heater, until we remember the power bill we ended up with last year! Then we start looking for our mittens and bed socks. But maybe there are other ways we can keep the house (and ourselves!) warm this winter?
The first thing to ask yourself is 'where is all the heat going?'. Because heat is a master at escaping. Through ceilings, cracks in door frames and windows or simply by dispersing throughout your house. There's no point turning up the heater when you can't contain the heat you're already generating.
First things first: Close up! As beautiful as open plan houses are, it costs a lot more to heat a whole house than it does to heat a single room. So segment your house and close off rooms that don't need to be heated. If you have ducted heating, close the vents in unnecessary rooms to bring more heat to the rooms that need it.
Blinds do more than block light. Glass is extremely effective at transmitting heat - and that works in both directions! By closing your blinds and using heavy, lined curtains you can prevent a massive amount of heat loss.
Plug those cracks!Cracks and gaps around window and door frames can easily be sealed with weatherstripping. Just pop into your local hardware store and look for the self-adhesive, foam strips. If it's a gap under the door that's giving you problems buy a door snake or install a door sweep! Too simple.
Invest in ceiling insulation. Did you know that a well insulated house requires up to 45% less energy to maintain its temperature? Ceiling's may look solid but they're actually one of the easiest places for heat to escape through. Even if you have ceiling insulation, if it was installed quite a long time ago or if the house has had a roof leak since you may find that the insulation requires replacing.
Let the sunlight in!Last but not least, remember to open up the blinds when the sun is out. Any North or West facing windows will receive a lovely amount of warm sunshine in winter.
Hopefully these tips will help you to have a warm winter without breaking the budget!