With cold weather approaching, homeowners, and even renters are going to see their energy costs going up as they heat their homes. Those who are from areas of cold, snowy and icy, winter weather, are no stranger to the many activities people have to do in order to winterize their home. Some of these steps to lower your energy consumption and protect you home during the winter can be done quickly, and others will take several hours, but all should be done before cold weather sets in.
- At minimal cost, you can have a heating and cooling specialist come to your home and inspect your furnace to make sure it is working correctly and efficiently. Many warranties require a yearly inspection so this will benefit you in multiple ways.
- Another important aspect to your household heating system is your ceiling fans. Reverse the direction of your ceiling fan so that they spin clockwise to create a downdraft that will keep heat low to the ground.
- Do you notice icicles hanging from your gutters surrounding your house? These can be dangerous because they can cause water to back up into your house which can create leaking, water spots, and mildew. A contractor or weatherization specialist may be able to identity spots in your attic where air is leaking and insulate those areas properly.
- Before the rainy and snowy weather hits, check your roof for loose or missing shingles. While you are up there, sweep off any debris that can cause bacteria and mildew build up and clean out your gutters to prevent water backflow into your house when the water is not navigated away properly.
- As windows and doors age with use, they may become drafty and lose their airtightness. Use silicon caulk to seal any gaps in the windows and exterior of the home. Weather stripping can be used around doors to make sure the doors seal tight against the frame. Don’t go too crazy with this though, your house still needs to be able to vent so that mold and mildew don’t build up in the walls and ceilings of your home. Mold can make allergies worse and cause headaches and other ailments. Venting your house after cooking if you have a gas oven will be important during the winter since you won’t be using your doors and windows as much. Running the ventilation fan on your range will help with this.
- Your outdoor plumbing is very important to pay attention to. Shut off all outdoor water supplies and make sure to drain the supply system.
- Cut down all dead tree limbs that are near your home or power line. When these branches become heavy with snow and ice, they can break off causing damage to your home or taking your power lines down with it.