By now you’ve probably noticed the chill in the air. You’ve put away the summer clothes, brought the sweaters and sweatshirts out of the closet, and maybe even turned your heat on. Winter’s coming. But how prepared is your house for the cooler weather ahead?
Weatherizing Your Home for the Colder Months Ahead
As a homeowner, you want to make sure this winter doesn’t catch you by surprise and cost you in the form of higher utility bills and lack of comfort in your home. That means spending some time (and some money) while the temperatures are still moderate weatherizing your home. Here are some tips for home winterization that can help you reduce your energy costs and stay nice and toasty all through the winter months.
#1 Keep the Cold Air Out: This is a simple concept: make sure all the cold air stays outside. And yet many homeowners every year fail to do the simple fixes that prevent cold air from invading their homes. A tube of caulk and a caulking gun can fix most problems. Simply take a tour around your home on one of these cooler days and look for spaces around door and window frames. These are the most common areas for cold air to sneak in.
#2 Keep the Warm Air In: That’s the job of your insulation. Ask the following questions:
- Have you been in your attic lately?
- Are there any gaps in the insulation there that would allow the heat from your house to escape?
- How about around those windows and doors that you just checked for gaps?
- Are they well-insulated around the frames?
- What about the walls that butt up against the garage?
If you have any doubts, service technicians from companies that specialize in window or door installation as well as garage door companies have the equipment needed to get a read on your home’s insulation effectiveness. Some will even do an energy audit of your home free of charge. If you need to replace windows or add insulation, that will cost a little, but probably less over the long run than what you’d pay on your energy bill with heat escaping your home.
#3 Window Film: If you don’t have thermal windows installed in your house, a lot of heat transfer can occur through the windows. If you’ve got these windows, or if seals are broken on the thermal windows, you need to take action. You can replace these windows, or for a little money and time, you can put film over the windows that aren’t energy efficient. Depending on the type of film you purchase, your view through those windows might be compromised, but you’ll be rewarded with lower energy costs.
#4 Check Your Furnace: Every homeowner should have their furnace cleaned and checked annually. This will not only help your furnace work more efficiently, resulting in lower heating bills, but it will reduce the risk for any furnace related fires or malfunctions that could destroy your home or put your family’s lives at risk.
You can also help your furnace function properly by making sure the filters get replaced regularly, especially during the winter months. Dirty air filters decrease air flow and make your furnace work harder…and that means paying more on your energy bill.
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If you want to make sure your home remains warm and cozy this winter, now is the time to act. Take some time and follow these tips to weatherize your home and garage for the coming winter weather.
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