Winterizing Your Home

Posted by Rick Clarke on Monday, November 28th, 2011 at 1:34pm.

Nothing is as reliable as the return of the cold weather and the high cost of heating your home as the mercury level drops.  Weather experts are predicting this will be especially cold, with temperatures below normal and precipitation levels above normal.

There are some simple and inexpensive solutions to improving your odds in the war against the rising costs of heating your home for the winter months.  Some of the winterizing improvements can be done in a quick weekend project others are even simpler. 

Winterizing is about controlling the air loss and improving the efficiency of heating the area.  Air loss is one of the major culprits in heating costs.  Check doors and windows for excess air loss.  This is an easy fix with caulking, threshold strips and insulation taping.  Checking for winter air loss around door thresholds and through windows or French and sliding doors can save an enormous amount on the cost of heating.  Some find the covering of windows and sliding or French doors with clear plastic can improve the insulation value of the room.  Every opening in the house is a potential for loss of warm air and availability of cold air entering the house.  Closing the gaps, tightening the seals and improving the insulation quality goes a long way to improving your arsenal against the raging high costs. 

Changing the thermostat is a great way to improve your expense levels year round, but especially in the winter.  Switching a standard thermostat to a programmable thermostat can improve your costs quickly.   Set the temperature to be more conservative temperatures while sleeping or out of the house, with the warmer temperatures during the times you are likely to need additional heat.  The savings add up quickly. 

Changing your furnace filters, is a quick and easy way to improve the efficiency of your heating system, which will improve your winter cost levels very quickly.  Clogged filters will lead to poor furnace performance; they also allow more allergens in to the indoor environment.

Change the direction of ceiling fans to move clockwise, this will allow the heated air to recirculate in the room, which can allow the room thermostat to be set lower without the room feeling colder. 

Insulate the attic, or other airs where air can escape.  Hot air rises, so the hot air will head for the attic and dissipate out through the roof, if the insulation is inadequate in the attic area.  Adding additional insulation can be a quick project and will add further protection from the cold, a decrease in the need to crank up the thermostat and will result in a warmer house for less money. 

The small steps can have a big impact.  There is no need to create elaborate projects.  A few well-placed changes can add up very quickly.  Air loss can cost a fortune over a chilly winter.    Finding ways to keep the cold air out and the warm air in is a simple process, which can save a great deal of money each winter.  So the important question is, how warm will you be this winter and what will that cost you?

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