© 1999 Michael S. Hyatt

If you ever get stuck without heat, you may find yourself in a survival situation within your own home. If it’s cold enough outside, if you’ve run out of fuel, or if your house somehow becomes damaged, you can literally freeze to death in your own home. What follows are just a few tips for surviving when your heat sources are few or weak.

  1. Line your clothing with something that insulates. Survival-school instructor Susan Conniry suggests the pages of a phone book work very well. Put them as close to the skin as is possible. Then put on as many layers of clothing as you can.

  2. Find a small room that is relatively free of wind drafts. Make a shelter in a corner using the two walls of the room, plus a couple of mattresses to form two more walls. Essentially you’re making a room within a room.

  3. Make a “nest” in which to keep warm. Find every pillow, blanket, towel and article of clothing you can, and create a pile or nest. If there are only two or three of you, you can get between the two mattresses on the floor like a sandwich and fill the edges with your nesting materials.

The key to keeping warm and surviving is to prepare as best you can, and whatever happens, think of ways to use what you have for your own good, and the benefit of others. No matter how ill prepared you are, there are ways to conserve what little warmth you have, even in the worst of situations.

Note: Read our discussion guidelines before commenting.