Saturday, November 15, 2014

Winter Warmth

I'm not sure about you, but where we live, winter is cold! How cold? Well, last winter we hit -40 C (which is also -40 F) for about a week. Our car wouldn't start and, of course, it had to be right before Chirstmas which is literally the busiest time of the year. Thank goodness for my Dad who drove in and boosted it for us every morning! 

Point is, staying warm isn't cheap, unless you have a wood-stove, in which case I am extremely jealous. So, I decided to put together a few of my personal tips, along with some that I found online, for those of us stuck with electric or natural gas furnaces. 

1.) Turn It Down - I'm not suggesting that we turn it down to 5 C and stay just above frozen all winter but keeping your home warm enough to walk around in a tank and shorts is a little excessive. (And I've seen it done before...) According to Statistics Canada, Canadians typically keep their home around 21 C (70 F) during the day and 17 C (63 F) at night. We keep ours at about 18 C (65 F) daytime and 15 C (59 F) at night and we're cozy. 

2.) Dress Warmer - Pretty simple. After you've turned the thermostat down, throw on your comfy clothes and you won't notice the difference. It's not uncommon to see me in something like this. Oh, and don't forget the cozy slippers! If your feet are cold, the rest will be too. 

3.) Blankets, Blankets, Blankets - We have blankets everywhere and we USE them.Mine are piled beside the couch and I cuddle up with one when I'm watching TV, using the computer, basically any time I don't have to move all over. Also, extra blankets on the bed at night! Oh, can I just say one more thing? Fleece or thermal Sheets! Have them. Use them. Love them. 

4.) Draft Stoppers - Even if you don't walk by your front door and feel a huge gust of cold air, you could still be loosing heat through it. (If you do feel that gust, there's a bigger problem). From looking at a few different energy stats for different areas, it seems that around draft stoppers can reduce heating loss by an average of 5% to 20% and help bring down your heating bill. Use the link below to find out how to make your own awesome Draft Stopper from One Good Thing. 

5.) Use Curtains Effectively - Even if you don't have insulated curtains, just using them properly can help heat your home. During sunny days, open the curtains wide in the rooms you're using. This will let the natural warmth (and light) of the sun in. However, as soon as the sun starts to go down, close the curtains in order to retain heat and put up an extra layer of protection from the cold. Pretty simple, just something I never really thought about before. 

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