Choosing the right heating method among a plethora of fireplaces & inserts, stoves, and accessories is key to staying toasty during those cool months. But that’s not all that needs to be considered. You don’t want to lose efficiency – and waste money – just trying to beat the winter chill. Here are some areas to look into as you prepare your heating source for the fall and winter seasons.
Insulation and sealing
The No. 1 way to make sure your heating is efficient and actually staying in your home is having quality insulation and sealing. Your house’s insulation is the first line of defense. If you are having a new house constructed, consult with your builder for the best quality insulation. If you purchased an older home, figure out what is already there and upgrade what is needed.
As far as sealing places where air could be leaking in or out, get a smoke pencil. These will help you pinpoint the exact spots where your air is leaking so you can insulate and seal those areas. Windows are big offenders of air leakage, so those areas are good spots to start checking.
There are a few easy items you can utilize to keep the heat in your space, so as not to keep cranking the thermostat. The first one is to invest in draft stoppers for your doors. These come in a variety of styles, usually as cylinders of cloth filled with beans or rocks to stay along the bottom to prevent the windy, cold air from seeping into your house. Some types also might be doubled to be on either end of your door if it can be accommodated.
Another method is to switch your ceiling fan to run in reverse. There should be a switch on the motor housing, and the blades will spin clockwise. When you set the fan on low, the spinning blades will nudge the rising heat down.
Sealing around your windows is the first, more important step, but having quality curtains is the next. Window treatments are usually thought of for esthetics only, but with good, thick, thermal-lined curtains, you can keep the heat in better. A DIY alternative is to sew fleece or flannel on the back side of your current curtains.
Rugs or carpeting
Keep your feet warm and toasty with carpeting or rugs. Hardwood throughout a house has been the trend in real estate, but those floors can become quite cold in the winter. Place quality rugs over the hardwood, not only to keep it in good shape but to retain the heat during the winter.
Colors and decorations
In addition to actually keeping you warm this winter with fireplaces & inserts or stoves, your house can visually exude a sense of warmth with certain colors and decorations. Warm, neutral colors are the first step in creating that cozy feel in any room. Try Sherwin Williams Canvas Tan SW 7567 or Benjamin Moore Ballet White OC-9.
As far as decorations, blankets and pillows immediately warm up a room and add to the cozy feel. Drape a blanket over the top of a couch or chair, and add a few throw pillows to create an inviting room.
On a cold winter night, dim the lights and relax in the warmth of your fireplace. Soft lighting gives off a warm glow, making your whole environment feel cozy. There are many devices now for installing bulbs that are dimmable through an app. You can light some candles, too, or take a safer approach and invest in battery-operated candles that simulate the flicker and glow of real candles (and some are even scented!)
There are many ways you can warm up your space, adding to the efficiency and ambience of your fireplaces & inserts or stoves. If you are looking for a new fireplace or stove, or needing a cleaning or repair on your current unit, contact AES Hearth and Patio for service in Harrisburg, Camp Hill, Carlisle & Central PA.