5 Hacks to Keep Your Home Warm in Winter

“Winter is Coming” might be a familiar tagline from a TV show that ended four years ago, but it’s never felt more relevant than right now. Even in the waning weeks of autumn, we’re pulling out our thickest coats and cranking the heaters in our houses and offices up to their highest settings, to fight off what’s threatening to be a particularly brutal winter.

Keeping a house warm effectively yet efficiently can be a trial-and-error process, and you might see your gas and electricity bills skyrocket as a result. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to prevent your house from turning into an igloo, without burning a hole in your hip pocket.

Tip 1: Rug Up
We’ve all been there; it’s a cold morning, you get out of your snug bed and put a foot on the floor, only to feel like you’re stepping onto an ice rink barefoot.
Heat rises, meaning if the floor of your home is chilly, it’s going to make for a cold house. Using rugs on hard flooring throughout the house can trap the heat and insulate the floor. This is especially handy in older homes that may have draughty hardwood flooring. So, consider adding a few stylish rugs to the colder parts of the home, or if your home has a lot of hardwood flooring, maybe think about installing carpet. If you’re planning to stay put for a few years, it may end up being more cost effective in the long run, whilst keeping you comfortable for many winters to come.

Tip 2: Take Advantage of Curtains
You don’t need to rely solely on indoor heating to heat up your home; natural light can boost your home’s temperature too. When it’s sunny outside, keep the curtains open! Then when it starts to get dark, shut the curtains to insulate your home and retain any warmth that’s been absorbed into the space. While it’s not as effective as a heater, this does make a difference and will help keep the warm air within the space. It may also be worth investing in heavy curtains to assist with heat retention.

Tip 3: Play the Waiting Game
When you get up in the morning, it’s completely understandable to want to turn your heating system up to its highest setting to thaw out the room. However, heating a room quickly rather than gradually uses more energy and will likely send your energy bill through the roof! Instead, set the temperature a few degrees lower than you normally would and let the room slowly heat up.
Maintaining a temperature of 18-20 degrees will keep the room warm without making an excessive difference to the amount of energy used. Once you go above 20, each degree could add a whopping 10% to your energy bill!

Tip 4: Pull Out the Winter Sheets
As the seasons change, it’s a good idea to swap over your bedding. Swapping from the breezy linen sheets of summer to a thick flannel bed set is going to make a big difference to the warmth of your bed. A heavier doona and sheets will help retain your body heat, keep you nice and cosy, and will make for more pleasant mornings. It could also be worth investing in an electric blanket, though be sure to preheat the bed and turn it off before falling asleep to conserve energy and remain safe. The only problem is, if you do this, you might not want to leave your bed!

Tip 5: Get your Bake On!
Yes really! Whipping up a batch of cookies or baking a loaf of banana bread can help warm up the home. If you find yourself with some spare time and ingredients, why not cook some delicious winter treats and keep the oven open after you finish to take advantage of the leftover heat! However, it’s important to note that you must never use an oven as a primary source of heat, as it can cause a dangerous build up of carbon monoxide in the home.

Hopefully these handy tips will help you prepare for winter, reduce your energy bill and carbon footprint, and make your home more comfortable for the next few chilly months ahead.

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