5 Practical Hacks for a Cozy Home This Winter

These easy tweaks can bring real benefits during the cold weather.

Boy holding his baby brother, sitting by the window in living room, looking at a snowy landscape outdoors.

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The transition from an open-door, barefoot-friendly and cool summer home to a closed, toasty and slipper-requiring one, comes naturally as the seasons change. Here are some tips on how to make that transition to a cozy home  a clean, healthy and safe one as the cold weather approaches

Clean heater filters for a safer home 

Most people have a type of heating, ventilation, or air conditioning (HVAC) system in their homes to keep them warm. However, ventilators might not only be spreading the air that keeps people warm, they could be blowing dust too. Holistic health coach and toxin expert, Lara Adler, tells wellness media outlet MindBodyGreen, that during the winter, heaters are constantly running and people should be mindful of changing and cleaning their filters. Adler encourages using HVAC systems with higher, Minimum Efficiency Reporting Values (MERV) ratings that measure effectiveness. Remember to clean them regularly for the safest air. 

Woman cleaning filter

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Pipes need protection too!

Pipes can burst if they get too cold causing major flood damage. But simply insulating pipes can make all the difference, writes home media outlet The Spruce. Installation is easy and there are a variety of materials one can use like flexible foam with rubber backing tape, bubble-film pipe wrap, foil-backed natural cotton and other materials found at home improvement stores. 


A pipe in insulation made from foam polyethylene

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Let the [cold] air flow in, even for only a few minutes 

This tip might seem counterintuitive in cold temperatures, but circulation in a home is important. In the winter people tend to leave  their windows and doors closed most of the time and this can lead to a build up of allergens, chemicals and other air pollutants that come from everyday products like aerosol sprays and cleaning products. That’s why Adler recommends keeping a window slightly open or to regularly open windows, even for a short period of time to allow fresh air to circulate. 

Woman breathing in the fresh air after opening the window

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Switch or easily upgrade home curtains    

Thick curtains are a low cost solution to  protect homes from losing heat through the windows. All curtains can help, but the thicker the lining the better, Carl Brennard, assistant manager of Moneymagpie, a website that offers tips on saving money, tells BBC news. He also suggests that people can line their current curtains with materials like inexpensive fleece. Even putting curtains near doors can add an extra layer of protection from the cold.  

Contemporary home interior with cozy curtains

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Have a humidifier, but keep it clean

While humidifiers are great for combatting the dry winter air on your skin, they must be clean to remain effective and safe,  cautions Adler. This holistic coach recommends buying humidifiers that have accessible water chambers that can be cleaned with soap and water. She also maintains that the perfect humidity level is key to ensuring that nosebleeds and dry skin from too low humidity and mold from too high humidity, are both avoided.  

Home humidifier near the window

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