6 Surefire Steps to Warming the Home this Winter



Anyone moving into an older house may find out the hard way that their heating is not up to scratch. Older builds are typically not insulated by today’s standards, making the impact of Winter’s cold days and chilly nights more painful than they need to be. It is possible to improve your home’s heating efficiency without taking on major renovation work or breaking the budget. Here are six surefire ways to improve your home’s heating:


  1. Upgrade Your Ceiling Insulation


Did you know that between 25 – 35% of heat escapes a home through the ceiling? That’s a significant amount of the warmth you rely on to keep the family cozy during winter. The solution is upgrading your ceiling insulation.


Fitting the entirety of the floor of your attic with batt insulation or blown in insulation can go a long way to trapping that desirable warmth. Ceiling insulation can also reduce your energy usage by limiting the need for heaters. This can save you money while also reducing your carbon footprint. Ceiling insulation is a cost effective solution that you can fit yourself when following the appropriate safety measures. Conservatory insulations also serve as great models you might be interested in.


  1. Get on Board for Gas Heating


Consider abandoning the electric heater and getting on board with gas heating. Natural gas is a superior choice for several reasons. Gas appliances are between 30 – 40% cheaper to run than their electric counterparts and are more eco-friendly, producing around 50% less carbon dioxide. They can also heat a room at a faster rate.


There’s a wide range of gas heating options for the home. Gas space heaters are small and often portable, ideal for storing away when winter is over. Gas central heating is appealing for a central living space and can even upgrade an existing fireplace. This way, you can keep that aesthetically pleasing feature while making it more efficient and reliable. 


When looking to heat every room in the home, ducted gas heating systems are the way to go. Ducted gas heating can be zoned just like ducted air conditioning but is cheaper to run and more eco-friendly.


  1. Deploy the Thermal Curtains


Bay windows are great for taking in the view, but glass is actually a poor insulator. Your windows are one of the weakest points in heating efficiency, responsible for around 10% of heat loss, making thermal curtains a must. Thermal curtains are made with acrylic foam placed in between the layers of fabric, which works to block heat from escaping outside. 


These insulated curtains are available in a variety of styles, fabrics and colors, so there’s bound to be an option to suit your decor. Best of all, thermal curtains are also useful in the summer as they can block the heat gained from sunlight, keeping you and your home cool and comfortable.


  1. A Little Ray of Sunshine


When the weather is fine, open the thermal curtains to let sunlight in. Indirect sunlight entering through windows can heat the air inside and affect the thermal mass of your home and possessions. Things like walls and floors and some furniture absorb heat from the sun and radiate it back throughout the day and into the evening.


Concrete and granite are well suited, but almost every material will give off heat. This passive heating solution costs nothing, but come nightfall; it’s time to draw the curtains and ignite the gas heater.


5.    Seal Floorboard Gaps and Insulate


If heat can escape through the ceiling, then you better believe that it will escape through the floor. An additional 10% of heat loss occurs through the floor, and this number will only increase if there are gaps in your floorboards. You wouldn’t leave a window open during a cold night. Gaps in the floor are essentially the same thing.


Insulating and draught proofing your floor are important steps, especially if it’s an older home. Any one of the many gap filling products available at the local hardware store is a great starting point for this simple DIY job. Underfloor insulation is also available as batts if you really want to maximise heating efficiency.


  1. Ceiling Fans in Reverse


This one may surprise you. Some ceiling fans are equipped with a switch that, when flipped, causes the fan to spin in the opposite direction. So why would you change the ceiling fan’s direction? During the summer, you should set the fan’s rotation counterclockwise. This directs the cooling airflow downwards to create a desirable wind chill effect.


During winter, flip the ceiling fan switch to make them spin clockwise. This draws cold air away from you towards the ceiling to assist in the warming of a home. Not all fans are equipped with this function, so you may luck out with this step. If your fan can change direction, remember: clockwise for winter and counterclockwise for summer.


And by following these steps, you should be ready to settle in for the night and enjoy that wondrous warmth.


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