Affordable Ways to Heat Your Home this Winter

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When the temperature and the leaves begin to drop, that means your energy bill is about to go up. However, you don’t have to spend an arm and a leg to keep your house warm. You can keep your energy costs down by cutting down the amount of energy you’re wasting. The following seven tips will help you do just that.

1. Let Sunshine In

If the sun is sufficient enough to heat the entire planet, it’s certainly good enough to heat your home. Fling those curtains open and let the sunlight in, and it will warm your house steadily throughout the day.
 

2. Put Plastic on your Windows and Glass Doors

According to Energy Audit Institute president Jeff Rogers, people lose 25 percent of their homes’ heat because of their window setup (1). For $6, you can buy a 62 x 84 inch transparent plastic film at your nearest home supply store. It’s easy to put on your windows, and you can take it off in the spring.
 

3. Strengthen Your Weatherstripping

If you have any damaged or worn-out weatherstripping in your house, the heat in your house is most likely escaping through it. Replacing your weatherstripping and sealing up the cracks around your doors and windows with caulk will keep your heat and your money right where they belong.
 

4. Shut Unused Vents

Any rooms that you don’t use often, such as a guest room or an attic, are a potential energy drain. Close the vents in those rooms. The less rooms your furnace has to heat, the more heat it can use to warm up the rooms you’re actually in.
 

5. Tell Your Thermostat What To Do

Instead of manually setting the heat in your house, invest in a programmable thermostat. That will allow you to control the temperature in your house throughout the day. If you’re at work or school during the day, you can keep the temperature low during those hours to save money. You can also program it so that the heat will come on a few mintures before you arrive back at the house.
 

6. Adjust Your Front Door Threshold

Heat often escapes through your front door if the door threshold is too low. Here’s a simple rule: if there’s visible daylight shining under your front door, the threshold is too low.
 
Thresholds usually have four or five adjustable screws that you can use to adjust the height. It’s okay if a little sunlight gets in. The key is to get the threshold high enough to prevent heat from escaping but not so high that it interferes with the opening and closing of the door.
 

7. Lock Up Your House

Locking your house keeps intruders out and your valuables inside, and that includes your heat. When you lock a door or a window, it usually presses more tightly against the frame and the weatherstripping. Leaving it unlocked can make a sizeable difference in how much heat escapes from your home, so lock it up and enjoy the savings.
 
Keeping your house warm doesn’t have to be expensive; it just requires thoughtfulness and a bit of hands-on work. Look at it this way: you’re going to have to make an investment of some kind: either time to weatherize your house or money to keep it warm. Since you probably don’t like wasting money, investing your time is better bet.
 
SOURCES:
1. Martin, B. (2015). 14 Sneaky Ways to Cut Your Home Heating Bills. Retrieved January 27, 2016, from http://www.popularmechanics.com/home/how-to/g737/9-sneaky-ways-to-cut-your-home-heating-bills/

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