It’s late January, which means most are still in the middle of winter and experiencing cold temperatures. I live in the Midwest and we had a stretch this month of two straight weeks of temperatures below freezing. In fact, we had four straight days of subzero temperatures during that stretch. Staying warm was essential for us, as is for most during colder weather. Unfortunately, it can cost a pretty penny to keep your house at a comfortable temperature. Thankfully, there are some ways to keep costs in check. Here are 11 frugal ways to warm your house during the winter months without busting your budget.
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Add Rugs to Hardwood Floors
If you have tile or hardwood floors in your home, you are losing a significant amount of your home’s heat through them. Throw some area rugs down over them so that you can keep the heat in your home and your feet toasty.
Use Your Fireplace
If you are fortunate enough to have a fireplace in your home, put it to good use. A wood-burning fireplace won’t raise your energy costs, plus it’s cozy and inviting to sit in front of.
Check Your Furniture Placement
It can be easy to forget where your vents are when the weather is nice outside, and you aren’t having to heat your home.
Now that you need the heat, check to make sure there is nothing blocking your vents. Make sure to rearrange the furniture if needed.
Reverse Your Ceiling Fans
Your ceiling fan blades should run clockwise in the winter to push warm air down from the ceiling closer to the floor. They should run counterclockwise in the warmer months.
Most models have a switch you can push to change the direction of rotation.
Close Off Unused Rooms
If you have rooms in your home that you aren’t using regularly, shut the door and close them off. There is no need to waste heat in a room no one is going to be in.
Change Your Furnace Filter
You should change your furnace filter once a month during the colder months. This keeps your furnace from having to work too hard, will reduce your energy costs, and will lengthen the life of your furnace.
Keep the Vents Open
Keep the vents open even in rooms that you have closed off. Pushing air to closed vents makes your heating system have to work harder, which can put a strain on your wallet and your heating system.
Install a Door Sweep
Installing a door sweep on your exterior doors is inexpensive and can help keep cold drafts from coming in under them. If you can’t find one, you can use a rolled-up towel in the meantime.
Leave the Bathroom Door Open
Humidity carries heat and can make your home more comfortable. So, when you have finished with your bath or shower, leave the bathroom door open so that heat can spread.
Seal Cracks and Gaps
You would be surprised at how much cold air can find its way into your home through cracks and gaps. There are lots of inexpensive and easy-to-use products that can help you seal any cracks, gaps, or holes that you might have.
Keep the Curtains Closed
Everyone knows that the sun is the best source of free heat. Opening your curtains or blinds when it’s bright and sunny outside is a fantastic way to warm up a room.
However, that doesn’t mean you always want to keep the curtains open during colder weather. If you have lined curtains, consider closing them before the sun sets. This will provide some insulation so your room and house don’t get too cold, or force your furnace to work too hard. Furthermore, if you’re going to be gone for much of the day, consider keeping them closed then too.
35 Proven Ways to Save Money Every Month
Many people believe it’s impossible to save money. Or, they think saving $20 or $50 a month won’t amount to much. Both are incorrect. There are many simple money-saving tips that can add up to big savings. You just have to start one, then another, to increase your savings.
How to Save Money On a Tight Budget
Saving money feels impossible when you’re struggling to make ends meet, but you can do it. Use these tips to save money each month, even on a tight budget.
Get Cash Back On Your Gas Purchases
It’s painful to fill up at the pump. Thankfully, there’s an app for that! With Upside you can get rebates on your gas purchases that you can redeem for cash.
Cut Your Grocery Bill in Half
Going to grocery store is an increasingly painful experience, but there are ways to save. Here are 12 proven ways to slash your grocery bill with minimal sacrifice.
11 Grocery Store Ripoffs
Going to the grocery store can be painful, but there are ways to lessen the pain. Here are 11 ripoffs to avoid when shopping to stretch your budget further.
I’m John Schmoll, a former stockbroker, MBA-grad, published finance writer, and founder of Frugal Rules.
As a veteran of the financial services industry, I’ve worked as a mutual fund administrator, banker, and stockbroker and was Series 7 and 63-licensed, but I left all that behind in 2012 to help people learn how to manage their money.
My goal is to help you gain the knowledge you need to become financially independent with personally-tested financial tools and money-saving solutions.