It's getting close to winter, which means that those of us who haven't yet reached for the thermostat will be doing so soon. For a lot of families, this is easier said than done.

Many families receive assistance through organizations such as the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program, or LIHEAP — they helped nearly 200,000 households in California alone last year. Unfortunately, there are many people who aren't eligible for assistance but still need a helping hand. Hopefully, this trick will help. It may not be the best residential furnace on the market, but those looking for a bit of relief might find it with this trick. 
This man has devised a way to use a couple flowerpots, a few bricks, and some candles to create a DIY space heater. It's a simple design, but the temperature it reaches is impressive. "This thing is so hot, you can barely touch it now," the creator says after finishing the project. He clarifies in the video description that the outside "reaches temperatures of 160F to 180F," with the inner chamber heating up to "500F."

To create this space heater, the guy in the clip uses two terra-cotta pots of varying sizes. He secures the smaller one to the big one using a 5 1/2" bolt with two hex nuts and four washers, putting them through the holes at the base. 

The San Francisco Globe

The way the space heater works is crudely illustrated in the graphic above. Candles don't give off a ton of heat, but the heat they do generate generally floats straight up toward the ceiling. By dispersing the heat from the opening between the pots and through the pots themselves, you're able to make much better use of the energy that's flowing away from the candle. Even the heat that flows directly upwards does so from a larger source than it would have with the candle. 

In the words of the video's creator, "(the) heater works by trapping and concentrating the heat that would normally just rise to the ceiling and quickly dissipate in the surrounding air. Once pots have warmed up they stay hot for hours. I built both 2 and 3 pot heaters. The 2 pot heater seems much more effective (if you are using large thick pots). If the pots are smaller then 3 pots may be better." 

In response to some fan suggestions, he has created another version of the tutorial that adds a fan to the top. This helps redirect some of the heat that may have otherwise floated to the ceiling, but considering the response he got on the first iteration, it's safe to say that it worked well enough for most people who tried it. 

How might you alter this project? Let us know in the comments, and when the video's over, be sure to share it with your friends on Facebook. You never know who you could be keeping warm this winter!