The temperature is dropping. Your duvet cover is helping less and less. Bad news: It is only going to get worse from here so now is the time to draw your battle plan and suit up to fight the cold. Here are some simple tips to do just that!
1. Take advantage of the sun
The energy source so great it was a God for some. Though emitting 11,000 degree Fahrenheit rays, it is amazing that some houses remain frigid year-round due to natural heating being forgotten during the building phase (e.g. orientation, window placement and size, double-glazing, concrete floors).
Nevertheless, there are still ways to utilize the sun you can do now, such as:
- Keep curtains that face the sun open during the day
- Install mirrors to direct the Sun’s rays into your room
- Get a few solar panels and use the energy at night
2. Close your doors.. most of the time
Not to say that you have your front door wide open when you are away, but making sure you close the door to rooms you rarely enter makes a world of difference.
Even industrial heaters have a hard time warming up small offices, so what hope does your 5 lb unit have in heating your house? Close your doors and give it less area to work with.
3. Roll out a rug
I’m a huge fan of hardwood floors. They are easy to clean, aesthetically pleasing, affordable and tough. But when it comes to keeping your feet warm, carpets wins hands down. However, putting in one for winter and ripping it out three months later is something only an insane person would do (side-note: I wonder how much that would actually cost?).
Thankfully, rugs are here to save you from toe frostbite. Survey your cave and get one to fit your needs as they vary shapes, sizes, and material.
A runner (the ones which fit nicely in a hallway) could act as a walkway between your sofa and the door. A thick area rug can be positioned smack bang in the middle under your poker table.
When the season starts to change, just roll it up and store it away.
4. Close curtains during the night
No matter how much insulation you have in your walls, your windows will let heat escape and cold enter. Yes, double-glazing helps a lot, but not all of us are fortunate enough to have it.
Keep more of that heat in by closing the curtains each and every night. Simple. Simple yet effective.
5. Get thermal curtains
Already have drapes but feel even your bath towel would do a better job? It may be time to upgrade to the thermal variety (also known as insulated curtains) which have a thin layer of foam between the fabric.
It comes at a slightly higher price but pays for itself from the energy savings.
- Blocks out the sun which makes it perfect for afternoon movie screenings!
- Not even those with superhuman eyesight will be able to see through
- Helps to contain sound so you won’t have your neighbor complaining about your music choices
6. Invest in a space heater
Space heaters do one job really well: rapidly heat up enclosed spaces. Assuming your windows aren’t cracked open and your cave isn’t open to the rest of the house, 10 minutes with one of these on will generate enough heat to last hours.
- Affordable. Not only are the units cheap to buy, the cost to run them is minimal since they only need to be on for mere minutes
- Portable. Unplug, pickup, move. When Winter leaves, store them away for another year
- Quiet. Aside from most convection heaters, electric space heaters make little more than a faint hum
- Safe. With no fumes or gasses being emitted from electric heaters, the only risk is accidentally touching them or putting flammable materials too close (both easily avoidable)
7. Put on an extra layer
Tried the above but still feeling the chill? A few extra layers of clothing should be enough to change that.
A long sleeve compression shirt (ones made for the cold rather than exercise), long sleeve shirt, and woolen sweater goes a long way.
Want to go all out? Researchers at Stanford University have had success incorporating AgNW-coated material (silver/nanowire) in various items of clothing. It was found to reflect >90% of body heat back to oneself. Compared to the average of 20%, that is an incredible improvement!