Winter is already creeping into town so it’s time to start thinking seriously about heating your home. There are a number of different ways to go about making your house or apartment warm and cosy, depending on your budget and your home.

Here are a few small things you can do around the house to keep heat in. If you get sun into your home during the day, leave your curtains or blinds open in the daytime to warm up the house.

As night falls, shut your curtains to keep the heat trapped in. You can also stop drafts coming in under doors with something like a rolled up towel.

When it comes to heaters there are numerous types to choose from. Radiant heaters are the cheapest and most portable and come in the form of element heaters, oil heaters or small fan heaters.

They are designed to warm the object or people in front of them, as opposed to warming the air in the room. So they’re good for a lounge room or study where people are just sitting.

To get the maximum benefit from a radiant heater put it under a window. Air coming through the window will be heated up and will help spread the heat throughout the room. Heaters in the middle of the room will leave the edges of the room cold.

Gas heaters are generally the most energy-efficient and the best for the environment. Portable ones can be plugged into a wall-mounted gas bayonet and are designed to heat a whole room.

The heater can be moved to any room you need it (assuming you have gas bayonets throughout the house). They are available as radiant heaters and convection heaters.

Convection heaters circulate warm, fan-forced air to heat up a room. They heat an area faster than a radiant heater and are good for rooms where people are moving around.

You can also buy combination radiant-convection heaters which, according to AGL’s website, are the most popular form of heater as they warm a whole room as well as the people sitting in front of them.

Reverse cycle air-conditioning is also popular as it heats your home in winter and cools it down in summer. However, some people dislike them as they dry the air in a room and may not be not good in terms of air quality.

If you’re willing to spend a lot of money on heating you could install a gas log fireplace, which can be inbuilt or freestanding and is excellent for heating a room.

Central heating will warm up your whole house. It can be installed under the floor or in the ceiling, although the floor model is considered most efficient (and the style favoured by modern architects). The warm air enters through floor ducts and circulates throughout the room and house. It can be gas or electric and use little energy over a long period of time.

Hydronic heating involves heated water running through inbuilt pipes throughout your home, and is popular in Europe.

Of course one of the best ways to keep warm this winter is with body heat, so snuggle up with someone if you can.

For more on heating your home, visit the Energy Australia and AGL websites.

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