Are you new to a cold region? Or are you in a new home? If so, you’re probably gearing up for the winter and possibly feeling a little nervous. Winter can be an extremely fun and exciting time, but only if you feel prepared for it. If you don’t, the thought of winter can be a bit overwhelming. So, though it may take a little time and resources, do the little things necessary to make your first winter more comfortable.
The first step to helping your home be comfortable during the winter is adding more light to your home. Because winter weather brings more clouds, darker days, and sometimes dreary cold, people often experience what’s sometimes called the “winter blues”—they feel more depressed, more lonely, and more tired. A great way to avoid the winter blues is to simply add more windows to your house! Light does extraordinary things. The vitamin D you receive via sunlight keeps your body healthy, strong, and happy. So, consider adding more windows to your house. Position the windows so they let in optimal sunlight during the day. Letting in the sunlight will also let in more heat, helping you feel happier and cozier at home. Avoid the winter blues and get more vitamin D by adding more windows to your home.
Another great way to help your home be cozy is to cover the cold floors. Many homes have areas with wood floors or tile floors. While these floors are beautiful and easy to clean, they are also colder than carpet. Reconstructing your floors to lay carpet in place of hard flooring can be extensive and expensive. However, purchasing floor rugs is easy and convenient. They do the trick of warming the floor so your feet don’t freeze in the mornings, but they’re inexpensive compared to laying carpet.
Heated Bathroom Floors
Heating your floors is another great contributor to helping make your first winter more comfortable. One room that you can especially benefit from heating is the bathroom. Bathrooms typically have tile flooring, which flooring naturally attracts the cold. Not only is it unappealing to step on a cold bathroom floor during the winter, but it is also frustrating as it can keep the rest of the room colder. A great solution to this problem is simply to install heated flooring. This flooring will help regulate the temperature in the whole room, which regulates the heat and helps your heater not have to work as hard. Furthermore, heated flooring is easy to install and makes your winter experience more enjoyable.
Improved Central Heating
Another way to help your home stay warm during the winter is to improve the heating system in your house. Many heating systems are available. One way to heat your house is by using a fireplace. While fireplaces are fun and cozy, they are also less effective. Furthermore, a fireplace requires a lot of maintenance to keep clean and running efficiently. Consequently, a fireplace as a sole source of heating may not quite do the job of heating your house as well as you might hope. Another option for heating your home is a furnace. This option is common in North America and is typically effective. The central furnace in your house pumps warm air through air vents into the rest of the house. This method of heating is more costly than a fireplace, but it will also keep your house warmer and more comfortable than using solely the heat from fire.
A simple and seemingly obvious addition to your home is blankets. However, blankets do a lot more to keep you comfortable than you might originally think. Purchasing and using warm, heavy blankets will enable you to run your heater at a lower temperature while still staying comfortable in your home. This simple addition results in a lower energy bill, and of course, saving money always makes you feel more comfortable. Fleece blankets are especially great blankets to purchase because they are lightweight and easy to transfer, but also incredibly warm.
To make your first winter more comfortable, you’ll also want to consider weatherstripping your doors and windows. Weatherstripping is a simple process that entails using caulking or another substance to fill in the cracks on the outsides of your windows and doors. These cracks let in cold air in the winter and make your heater work harder to heat the house. The cool draft these gaps let in also make sitting by the door or window less enjoyable. So, consider putting this simple yet extremely valuable addition in your home. Besides removing the cold draft, the effect of the weatherstripping will effectively lower your energy bill because the heat in your home won’t seep out through the gaps by the doors and windows.
On top of weatherstripping your house, consider upgrading your insulation. Insulation in a house is important because it helps keep the heat in and the cold out of your house (or vice versa in the summers). However, sometimes insulation isn’t as effective as it could be. Upgraded insulation has a higher R-value that helps the insulation resist heat transfer. Consequently, when you heat your house and have upgraded insulation, you’ll find that the heat stays in your house better than it did before. This heat trapping may also enable you to run your heater at a lower temperature, saving you money on your energy bill.
Finally, one last great way to make your home comfortable for the winter is to add a new coat of paint to your walls. When you paint in the summer, the paint often has difficulty drying because of summer heat and humidity. However, those problems are removed in the winter, making wintertime a great time to paint. Furthermore, painting a lighter and brighter color in your house during the winter can help you feel happier and can better reflect the light from your newly added windows. So, to prepare for the winter darkness, paint your walls with a fresh coat of light paint.
Winter brings laughter, holidays, cheer, fun, and cold. To enjoy the beauty of the season, you need to be prepared for the ugly of it too. So, make your home comfortable for the wintertime. Add more windows; lay rugs; get heated bathroom floors; get improved central heating; add blankets, weatherstripping, and upgraded insulation to the mix; and finally, repaint the walls. These small and easy steps will help you have a comfortable first winter.
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