Winterize Your Home â Ways to Save Money
Winter not only brings cold temperatures, blustery winds, mounds of snow and drifts but drafty homes and higher heating bills around many parts of the world. If you need ideas on how to stop the drafts from entering your home and more ways to save money read on for these tips that you can begin today.
Many ideas to winterize your home can not only be done in the autumn but, as long as your home is warm enough these ideas can also be done any time during the winter season. Any attempts made to winterize your home will help you to save money for the rest of the season and into the summer months as well.
Tips to Winterize Your Home
Add Attic Insulation â the attic is an area of the home that is often overlooked for adding insulation but when heat leaves the home it is very often through the attic and eventually the roof of the home â where most heat and cool loss is noted. Simple attic insulation products can be installed by the do-it-yourselfer and should contain 7-10" on the attic floor with an R value of 49-60 according to The Department of Energy. For those on a budget that prohibits typical fiberglass rolled insulation purchases, using newspaper wrapped in plastic can be equally effective for the short term fix to winterize your home through the attic.
Pipe Insulation â add pipe insulation to any exposed pipes in the basement of your home to help to save money and winterize your home. Pipe insulation is typically made of foam and easily wraps around any exposed pipes which helps to keep your hot water hot and avoids wasting water and money. Pipe insulation can be installed by almost anyone and is easily cut to fit small and tight areas of pipe in the basement.
Seal any Cracks â check the foundation and basement areas of the home to determine if there are any cracks that may be allowing air to enter the home. Seal any cracks with a clear caulking that will greatly reduce wasting energy by having your furnace run more often from cold air in the home.
Seal Window Woodwork â determine if you have a draft around any of your window frames since this is an area of your home that can have drafts that enter and cause your heating bills to skyrocket. By simply using a clear caulk around all the areas of the window frames will help to tighten your home and help you to save money. Caulk is installed with a caulking gun and contains easy to use directions that almost anyone can follow.
Seal Baseboards â baseboards are another area of the home that can sometimes leak air in from the outside walls. Hold your hand against these areas of the home to determine is a draft or cool breeze is entering and seal with a clear caulk as above in sealing window woodwork.
Seal Outlets on Exterior Walls â outlets on the exterior of are a common area that can leak air and bring drafts into the home. Remove the outlet cover and feel with your hand to determine is a cool breeze or draft is entering. Outlets can be covered with a simple insulated cover that is placed just under the outlet cover and will make an immediate difference in helping to winterize your home and help you to save money.
Seal Windows â hold a lit candle at the window where the top and bottom windows meet. If the candle flickers, you have an air leak that is costing you money by allowing cool and drafty air into your home. Window insulation kits are available that can be installed with tape and a blow dryer to heat seal the tape for a secure and tight fit. This will greatly reduce the drafts and help you save money.
Seal Doors â If closed exterior doors leak air and allow drafts to enter the home, simply by adding an insulating tape along the frame will help to tighten that seal and reduce the loss of heat from your home. This is an easy way to winterize your home and help you to save money, even if you are a renter.
Check Ceiling Fans â ceiling fans that are turned to move clock-wise will help to bring the warm air that rises down into to the room as it recycles the air. What a simple way to get more warm air into a room!
Add a Programmable Thermostat â a programmable thermostat can be set for the particular hours of day that you will be home and need your furnace on. During sleeping hours, you can easily set the thermostat to turn down automatically. This is a great way to winterize your home and will quickly and easily pay for itself when your heating bill is lower. If you can't buy a programmable thermostat right now, turn your thermostat down to 60-65 if possible during sleep to help to save money. Add more blankets to the bed instead of having the furnace running.
Check Furnace Yearly - Make sure your furnace gets a professional check-up yearly for the most optimal energy savings possible. Change your furnace filter monthly and your furnace should work well and last for years.
Close Doors and Vents to Unused Rooms â if you have a guest room or other rooms in the home that are not used daily, close the heat vents to those rooms which will redirect heat to other rooms in the home. Also close doors to those unused rooms that are not needed. When needed again, simply open the vent back up and open the door and within a short amount of time, the room will be warm enough to use.
Use Zone Heating â turn off the furnace and use a space heater or electric fireplace instead in the room you will be spending most of your time. It is often a waste of money to heat the entire home when family members will all be in the family room. Dress in warm layers to stay comfortable while trying to lower your heating bills and to save money. *Never leave a space heater unattended or near drapes and other fabrics or flammable materials.
These ideas to winterize your home will help you to save money in a very short amount of time and your home will be warmer and cozier as an added bonus.
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