Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Easy tips for winterizing your home

Check your furnace, make sure filters are fresh and clean. If you have an older furnace, consider having  it inspected and tuned to make sure it is in proper working order and running as efficiently as possible. If it is more than 10 years old you may be wasting a lot of energy and money than it's worth, consider upgrading to a new furnace.

Clean your gutters. Clogged gutters allow rain and snow to pool up on your roof creating a chance for leaks. Also be sure that down spouts are properly attached and draining out and away from the home, preferably 10 feet away from the foundation.

Check attic insulation. If you can see the joists you need more insulation, add a layer to the existing insulation. Make sure to use NON paper backed insulation.

Clean your chimney. It's important to make sure the chimney is clean and free of debris before using it during the cool winter. You can hire a professional to sweep and inspect your chimney. Also make sure your chimney has a screened cap to keep unwanted items and animals out!

Replace batteries on smoke and carbon monoxide alarms.

Check for drafts and leaks by walking your home with a lit candle checking doors and windows. Replace old weatherstripping if needed and employ the use of door sweeps to keep cold air out.

Switch the direction of ceiling fans. Did you know that your ceiling fan runs two separate ways? Well they do! In the winter change the direction to clockwise allowing air to push downward into the room recirculating the hot air that rises to the ceiling.

Drain water lines. Make sure those sprinklers are blown out and outdoor spigots are turned off. Detach hoses and store them properly. This will keep water from freezing your pipes and creating costly repairs.

Turn down your water heater. Most household heaters are set to 140 degrees which is a lot higher than you really need, by lowering the temperature to 120 you can save 6-10% on heating costs!

Use a programmable thermostat. This will keep your home energy costs down by operating the heating consistently. It will allow you to decrease the temperature when no one is home and save on your heating bill.

Close off vents in un-used rooms. No sense in heating a room that no one is using!

Throw on a sweater and some slippers and enjoy Old Man Winter.

~5280 Lady


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