Keeping warm in the winter
Fall is in the air with the leaves falling fast now and temperatures dropping, the temptation to build a roaring fire in the fireplace for some heat and ambiance or as an alternate heating source is growing. Before you retire to the “great indoors” for the winter, consider the following heating tips for your home this winter:
Fireplace for ambiance, not heat
Remember that although wood-burning fireplaces certainly add an element of romance and coziness to your room, they actually aren’t a great source of heat for your home. Much of the heat that is produced by a wood fire goes right up the chimney, and in fact, takes the room’s existing heated air with it. Your furnace actually ends up working harder to replace all the warm air that has gone up in smoke and out of your home. Wood-burning fireplaces simply don’t heat a room well.
Close the flue
The chimney can also be a source of drafts. So, if you’re trying to keep your heating bills down, a drafty chimney can make it more difficult to do so. Shut the flue when you aren’t using your fireplace and keep the fireplace doors shut to minimize the chilly draft.
Sparing use of space heaters
Many of us also want to utilize our three-season porches as far into the fall season as possible, and rely on space heaters to provide some extra warmth for short periods of time. If you plan to use a space heater, invest in a newer unit that has been tested carefully for safety features and don’t ever leave your space heater unattended. Always turn off and unplug units before leaving the room or retiring for the evening.
Use natural heat
One last idea to add a little warmth on these cooler days – open south-facing curtains to allow sun to come in and warm things up. It’ll create the perfect napping spot for your pet or a sunny place to read for yourself. Just remember to close the curtains as the sun goes down to retain as much of the warmth as possible.
Regardless of how you plan to heat or create some extra warmth in your home, make sure you have enough smoke and carbon monoxide detectors and double check they are in good working condition on a regular basis.
Enjoy snuggling in with your wood-burning fireplace and space heaters – just realize that neither are a good source of heat for a large space. Your furnace is your best bet for a warm and cozy home.
For home maintenance and comfort tips, visit StayComfyMinnesota.com! Stay Comfy, Minnesota is your Minnesota resource for air conditioning repair, furnace repair and HVAC tips and advice.