Information

How to Stay Warm at Home Without a Heater

Date Posted: 11.12.2012

So maybe you're a poor college student, or maybe your parents are cheap. What if your landlord didn't fix the furnace yet? Maybe you live in an old drafty house. Perhaps you want to curb CO2 emissions. Whatever the reason is, it's cold and you need new ways of keeping warm. Here are some of those tricks!

1. Close all of your windows properly. This includes making sure storm windows are installed and closed in place if you have them. Windows should be latched. Open them during the day if the outside temperature is higher than the inside temperature.
2. Use cheap clear shower curtains over the windows that receive sun light. This will keep the cold air out, and the warmth from the sun will heat your house without cold air coming in. You could also cover your windows with clear plastic sheets and make it airtight.

3. Put up curtains. A set of heavy curtains can block heavy drafts of air. Open them when the sun is shining and close them when it's not.
4. Seal your doors. Check around the door frame and also under the door. You may want to buy weather stripping or a door sweep. Again, at minimum, make a draft dodger or stuff a towel at the bottom of the door.

5. Let as much sun hit your house as possible. Check for obstructions (e.g. plants, sheds) that might keep the sun's rays from reaching your house. Remove items leaning against walls on the sunny side of your house. (Ideally, put them back again at night for additional insulation).
6. Close off any unused rooms. The closed door makes that room another barrier between you and the frigid outdoors. It also stops air from circulating as much, which reduces heat loss.

  • Home improvement stores sell magnetic register covers to 'shut off' forced air furnace registers in unused rooms. That way when the heater does click on, only the registers in the rooms you use will pump out heat. This makes for more efficient use of the heater.
     
  • Check that all heat registers are adjusted open, especially where plumbing pipes might freeze. Unblock cold air returns in heated rooms (they may be blocked with furniture or rug) so heat can circulate efficiently

7. Put down a rug or carpet. Rugs and carpets help prevent heat loss through the floor. They are generally warmer to the touch than wood or stone, and so offer a warmer surface to walk on.

8. Add insulation in the attic and the crawl space. A lot of heat escapes through the attic, as warm air rises and cold air sinks. Make sure that your attic has enough insulation.

9. Cook. Steam will raise the moisture level in your home, making the air more dense, and it uses more energy to heat humid air. Limit cooking that gives off steam, as this will increase the humidity in the air and make your house damp.

  • Make cookies or a pie instead, as your oven will help to dry the air and heat the kitchen. The kitchen will be warm while you are cooking, and then you can have a great home cooked meal too!
     
  • Raising humidity in the winter time helps. Humid air holds heat better and can be a blessing when your heating system dries out the air to an uncomfortable level. It does not take more energy to heat humid air.
  • 10. Light a candle. A candle/candles can produce a lot of heat, just be mindful of where they are placed and do not leave them unattended. A trip to most any grocery store or discount store can provide you with a number of candles cheap!
    11. Get a dehumidifier. Dehumidifiers are designed to remove the moisture from the air, not to specifically heat or cool the room. The way they remove this moisture is to reheat the air to further dry it after it releases its moisture.
    • Basically, the room temperature humid air enters the dehumidifier where it is cooled to its dew point which results in its releasing its moisture. This dried air is then heated by the combination of latent heat of condensation, which is a natural result of the process, and by circulating through the condenser where heat is exchanged from it to the air.
       
    • The result is the air going back into the room will be slightly warmer than it was going in, usually around 2 to 5 degrees.

12. Drink warm beverages. Warm beverages will heat up your core temperature. The process can be very relaxing and even stimulating. Make a cup of tea or coffee. Sip on some warm broth.

13. Dress warmly. A hat is your number one friend at a time like this. A large percentage of body heat loss occurs in the head region so it is crucial to keep your head covered. A turtleneck sweater can also work wonders. Dress in layers, especially with wool or cotton clothing. Wear slippers or warm socks. When you are sitting still, wrap a thick blanket around you. If you still get cold legs, you could buy a 2-pack of black tights from your local shop. Make sure they are opaques. Wear one or more pairs over each other under your clothes; this will provide your body with another layer of clothing to trap in warm air. Men can use long underwear in lieu of stockings.
14. Use smaller rooms. If, for example, you have a bedroom that is much smaller than your living room you could choose to use it as your bed-sitting room

15. Exercise. 20 minutes of vigorous exercise can warm you up and keep you warm well after the exercise session. Plus, a healthy body is generally more tolerant of the cold.

  • Be active. Moving around produces body heat! The more you are active, the better your blood circulation will be. This will mean that hot blood gets to your fingers and toes, keeping them warm.

16. Find a friend or pet to snuggle with. The living body of any warm-blooded being is a furnace unto itself. Snuggle with your cat or dog and leech off of some of their warmth.
17. Sit on a 50 watt heating pad. Rather than heating the whole house or room, sit on a low wattage heating pad

18. Buy a thick bathrobe or dressing gown. Think of it as a big, fluffy blanket with sleeves. They are very warm and comfortable, and you can even sleep in them!
19. Go visiting/vacationing. Purposefully spend time in a location that is heated at no cost to you: library, church, a friend's house, etc

20. Evaluate and plan. Consider how you got yourself into this position. If you are suffering a cold house due to an energy blackout, the above tips will help you get through this short term emergency. But if you are living with a non-working heater because you don't have enough money to pay for heat repairs, you will need to start saving money in the bank for exactly this type of emergency. Pay yourself first so that you can get through any and all emergencies as they arise. Don't leave yourself out in the cold.

Source : wikihow, December 8th, 2012


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