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Cold Yet? How to Survive Your First New England Winter

Tips for Staying Warm without Breaking the Bank

If you recently relocated to New England, you’re about to experience your first winter here. Unless you’ve lived in northerly climes before, you may be in for a bit of a shock. Throughout most of the region, winters are often brutal, bringing freezing temperatures, massive snowfalls and icy conditions. A well-designed heating system will keep you warm, but if you want to stay extra toasty without ending up with a massive energy bill, you have plenty of options. Here are a few examples:

Cover Bare Floors – Hardwood floors are lovely, but there’s a reason carpeting became so ubiquitous: Bare floors are responsible for up to 10 percent of a home’s heat loss during the winter. Invest in some thick area rugs to minimize this issue.

Use Curtains – On sunny winter days, uncovered windows are optimal because they let sunshine in and create a greenhouse effect of sorts. On cloudy days and at night, however, lots of heat can escape through windows. Thick curtains help a lot, and you can buy curtains with thermal linings to maximize the effect. If you’re crafty, consider upgrading your existing curtains with fleece or another warm material for similar results.

Seal Off Unused Rooms – Help heated air get where people spend the most time by keeping unused rooms closed off from the rest of the house.

Block Chimneys – Sure, sitting in front of a roaring fire is cozy. If your fireplace is mostly decorative, though, sealing it up is a great way to keep heat from escaping through it. Chimney balloons are perfect for this. Simply insert one up and out of sight, and then inflate it until it blocks the chimney completely. Woolen chimney blockers are also available and work about as effectively.

Bundle Up – Now is definitely the time to invest in some cozy clothes and accessories that ward off the chill. A thick, soft robe can really work wonders on brisk mornings, for instance, and high-quality slippers are a must. Throw blankets work well too, but heated blankets are even better. With these supplies on hand, you’ll be less tempted to crank up the heat.

Insulate Your Windows – If you’re okay with not being able to open windows all winter, consider insulating them with thick plastic sheeting. Window insulation kits are available, and they’re the most convenient way to get the job done.

All of the above tips will help you stay a lot warmer, but nothing can take the place of an efficient, properly functioning heating system. Major advances have been made in the last few decades, so if yours is fairly old, upgrading may be the way to go. Even the best systems start wearing down over time, becoming less effective and efficient. Annual tune-ups and service plans from Dupuis Oil will help keep these issues at bay. Learn more by visiting our website today.