The insulation in old buildings has worn away causing them to poorly retain heat and air conditioning. With age, the doors won’t sit on the hinges as well and the windows won’t fit just right, creating drafts. Fortunately, there are many ways to fight the inevitable drafts in older apartment buildings.
Managing the Drafts
You need to locate where all the drafts start and what you can do to fight each of them. If you have incense or candles, you can simply find drafts by following the smoke path when you place it by a door or window. Once you know where the drafts start in your apartment, you will be able to remedy them. Weatherstripping underneath doors and caulking holes around doors, windows, and along the walls is one of the most impactful methods to fighting drafts.
Create Non-Damaging Window Coverings
If you have a drafty window, consider using a part-time window covering. Caulk is permanent while a non-damaging window cover is perfect for while it’s cold outside. Likewise, you can even take it with you when you move out of the apartment. A heavy curtain is a great way to insulate a drafty window, however you can use plastic wrap and double-sided tape instead to make sure no cold, winter air makes it through your window and into your apartment.
Invest in Space Heaters
After you seal off openings where cold air could enter and warm air could escape, space heaters can keep the coldest apartments toasty during the winter. It’s important to find the optimal place to put space heaters so each one warms as much of your apartment as possible. Space heaters need to stand a minimum of one foot away from any wall and nothing should be within three feet in front of them. Additionally, it is imperative there is no moisture or dampness around them. Be sure to read and obey all safety instructions printed by the maker of your space heater.
Check Your Fireplace Flue
If your apartment has a fireplace, the flue is probably the greatest contributor to a draft. The chimney lets smoke flow out, but the flue controls how much smoke is allowed to flow out. When waiting for your fire to take off, the flue is kept closed to keep the heat in. Once the fire gets roaring, you want to open the flue so smoke doesn’t billow into your apartment. The problem is, most people forget to shut the flue when the fire dies down, which allows a chilling draft to drop into your apartment through the chimney. Make sure to keep the flue closed whenever you aren’t burning a fire so drafts aren’t able to sneak in and cool your apartment off. Once your fire has died down to embers, be sure to shut the flue to keep the heat in and the draft out.
Shut Doors to Compartmentalize
The only people that can occupy each room of their apartment at any given time are studio renters. An easy way to keep drafts at bay is to keep doors closed. Should any of those rooms have a draft, the door will help keep the draft trapped to the one room instead of drifting through the entire apartment. While you should still seal off the windows with plastic wrap and two-sided-tape, this is a good general rule to keep your common spaces warm throughout the winter.