How to Take the Natural Approach to Heating Your House This Winter
Keeping your home nice and toasty during winter months can seem like an expensive endeavor. However, there are small things that you can do to improve the heating in your home during the winter. These alterations may require a bit of DIY, but it is possible. Something as simple as maintaining your furnace and HVAC system will provide good air quality in your home, and it will also allow your system to continue to run efficiently.
Improve Insulation and Ventilation
It’s important to make sure your home is properly ventilated as this can affect the insulation. Having a properly ventilated roof reduces indoor temperature extremes. This prevents hot and cold spots that can cause water to freeze beneath your shingles and damage them. When you heat your home in the winter, warm air and moisture rise to the attic. If your attic is not well-ventilated, moisture collects in the attic. The moisture will then seep into your house structure, warping roof materials. When insulating your attic, it is recommended that you have 1 square foot of ventilation for every 300 cubic feet of space in the attic. Penetrations need to be sealed in the attic to stop free airflow. Damaged roof vents should be replaced. Keep attic vents uncovered to avoid moisture issues. For more heavy-duty work and to keep your house heated, put insulation between all of your floor joists in the attic.
Close Your Curtains
Winter curtains are a great tool for receiving insulation during cold months. Double-glazed windows have a lower insulating capacity than an uninsulated wall. They are essentially holes that allow heat to escape your home. Most curtain tracks are open at the top, which means there is a narrow gap that reduces the thermal performance of your curtains. To avoid this, you essentially want to install a pelmet that covers the top of a curtain rail. You also want to use a floor-length curtain. When choosing curtains, you want to pick ones that have at least two layers of fabric. Curtains that fit well and that are layered have a value equal to double glazing.
Caulk Your Gaps
The best way to have a warm home in winter is to limit the amount of draft air that comes into your home. You can use caulk to fill in these gaps. You first need to find the leaks to figure out what you need for ventilation. You typically need half of a cartridge of caulking for each window. For the caulking to be effective, you first need to clean all areas that are going to be caulked, removing old paint and caulking. You also need to dry the area so that you don’t seal in moisture. Try to avoid stops and starts when applying the caulk. Use a putty knife to push in caulk that oozes out of a crack. It is also best to apply the caulk when there is low humidity to prevent cracks.
A lot of issues regarding heat require maintenance. You want to make sure your attic is well-ventilated and insulated. It’s also important to limit the amount of heat that is escaping through your curtains. Finally, you want to find the gaps in your windows and doors, and use caulk to fill in those gaps. Doing so, you’re sure to feel warm and comfortable this winter.
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