In many parts of the U.S., the winters get very cold. Between the freezing temperatures, the strong winds, and the snow and ice, and the shorter days, people start counting down the days to spring as early as November. If you want to make November through May a bit easier to get through, there a few winter hacks you wish you have known sooner.
Run Your Ceiling Fans In Reverse
Ceiling fans are great for keeping it cool in the house during the summer, but they can also be helpful during the winter. If you run the fan in reverse, it will circulate the warm air back down to the floor level. This will help keep the house warmer, without needing to turn up the thermostat.
Park Facing East
If there is snow in the forecast, you should park your car facing east. The vehicle will be facing the sun, which will help to melt the ice. This will save you a lot of time and energy when it stops snowing.
Shave the Pills From Your Wool Coat
If you have a wool coat you love, but it is covered with pills, you don’t have to throw it away. If you run a razor over the jacket, and your wool coat will look brand new.
Use a Hot Water Bottle
Winter nights can get cold, and many people use electric blankets. If you don’t want to waste electricity, you can just use a water bottle. If you put it under the covers before you go to sleep, it will keep you warm all night long.
Enjoy the Sunshine
This winter hack is a great way to boost your mood. Most people don’t spend too much time outside during the winter because it is so cold. If you want to boost your mood a bit, go outside and stand in the direct sunlight for five minutes. You will be surprised by how you feel.
Put Sandwich Bags Over Your Feet
There is nothing worse than having wet feet on a cold winter day. Even if you have waterproof boots, moisture will still leak in. If you want to keep your feet dry, put sandwich bags over your feet. This will prevent the moisture from reaching your socks.
Cover Your Windshield Wipers With Old Socks
If you have some old socks, don’t throw them away. If the weather is going to be wet and frigid, you can use your old socks to cover your windshield wipers. This will keep them from getting damaged from the snow and ice, but give yourself some extra time because you will need to pull them off.
Add Some Cotton Insulation To Your Boots
It isn’t uncommon for your feet to get really cold during the winter. If you want to keep your feet warm, you should add an extra layer of wool in your boots. Simply remove the insole from the boot, and but a piece of wool the same shape and size. This will also work if you want to keep your feet warm in the house while you are wearing your slippers.
Cover Your Side Mirrors With Sandwich Bags
If you want to protect your side mirrors from the snow and ice before a storm, cover them with sandwich bags. The plastic will prevent them from being damaged, and it will be one less area that you need to scrape the snow and ice from.
Use Cooking Spray On Your Snow Shovel
Shoveling snow is no fun, but it gets more difficult when the snow starts sticking to the shovel. If you have to pound the snow off each time you scoop up the snow, it will make the job take even longer. To keep the snow from clinging to your shovel, spray it with cooking spray.
Make Your Own De-Icer
If your walkway or driveway is covered with snow and ice, you don’t need to waste your money on de-icer. You can easily make your own with items that you have right in your own home. All you need to do is mix a half-gallon of hot water, a teaspoon of Dawn dish soap, and a tablespoon of rubbing alcohol. This will quickly melt the ice.
Use Newspaper To Dry Your Boots
When you come inside, after being out in the snow, you are going to want to dry your boots. The best way to do this is with old newspaper. Put a few sheets on the floor, and put your boots on them. If the inside of your boots are wet, roll some newspaper in a ball, and stuff it in the boot. It will absorb the moisture, drying your boots faster.
Sprinkle Kitty Litter Around Your Tires
If you have ever gotten stuck in the snow, you know how annoying it can be to try to get out. If you have a cat, you are all set. Sprinkle some kitty litter around your tires, and it will provide the traction you need to get get out. Best of all, the kitty litter won’t melt the snow the way de-icer does, which will dig you in even deeper.
Homemade Hand Warmers
If you want to keep your hands warm this winter, you don’t have to spend money on store-bought hand warmers. All you will need is a large sandwich bag, a small sandwich bag, calcium chloride, and water. Start by pouring the sodium chloride in the larger bag, and pour water into the smaller one. Next, put the smaller bag in the larger one. When you break the smaller bag into the larger one, it will create a chemical reaction, and it will heat up. Just make sure that it doesn’t come into contact with your skin.
Blow Bubbles Outside
This hack isn’t designed to make your winter easier; it is designed to help you have more fun during the winter. Go outside and blow bubbles with dish soap. It the temperature is freezing, or close to it, the bubbles will free in a few minutes or a few seconds. They look really pretty when they are frozen. If your kids have bubbles leftover from the summer, they work just as good.
Scrape the Ice With a Credit Card
There is nothing worse than when there is a deep freeze, but you don’t have an ice-scraper. A great way to scrape the ice is to use your credit card. When you are able to get the windshield clear, you should use that same credit card to go buy a real ice scraper. At least now you know how to scrape the ice from your windshield in a pinch.
Defrost Your Car Door Locks
There is nothing worse than trying to get into your car only to find that the doors are frozen. The best way to get the lock thawed out so that you can be on your way is to squirt the lock with hand sanitizer. After a few seconds, you should be able to fit your key in enough so that you can break the ice.
Cook In the Oven More Often
During the winter, you should find recipes that are cooked in the oven. When the oven is on, it will heat up your home a bit. When your food is ready, and the food comes out of the oven, leave the oven open to allow it to cool down. This will warm your home up even more.
Keep Your Boot’s Shape
It can be difficult to prevent your high winter boots from losing their shape. The best way to do this is to cut up a pool noodle and use it to keep your boot’s shape. This will keep them looking great when you aren’t wearing them.
Put Zip Ties On Your Bike Tires
If you rely on your bike to get from one place to another, it can be a hassle when there is snow on the ground. Since they don’t make snow tires for your bike, you can make your own. If you put zip ties all around your tires, it will give you the traction that you need to get through the snow.
Block the Draft Under the Door
It is not uncommon for drafts to come in from under the door during the winter. To keep this from happening, slide a pool noodle underneath the door. You should cut it the width of the door so that the pool noodle will “hug” the bottom of the door. If you want to make it more stylish, you can dress it up with pants or a shirt.
Keep Your Garage Door Clean With a Tarp
When you pull in the garage, the dirt, snow, and ice on your car can melt off, making the floor dirty. To keep this from happening, all you need is duct tape, a tarp, and four pool noodles. Tape the pool noodles around the edges of the tarp and place it on the garage floor. When you pull your car into the garage, the floor will stay clean.
Close the Doors
On a very cold day, you want to keep the occupied rooms as warm as possible. The best way to do this is to close the doors to the rooms you aren’t using. It is easier to heat up a smaller space than a larger one.
Tin Foil in the Fireplace
Fireplaces are really nice during the winter, but they can be a hassle to clean. To make cleaning easier, line the fireplace with tin foil. When the fire goes out, and the fireplace cools down, all you need to do is fold up the aluminum foil, and your fireplace will be clean.