Everyone is always going through different hardships, but sometimes a collective pain brings us all together. A few years ago, it was the pandemic and quarantine. Now, it’s the rising costs of food and gas. So, what do these increasing prices mean for our cozy winter homes? You’ll need to shell out some big bucks if you don’t plan accordingly.
Winterizing your home this year is a great way to save on your heating bill, and it may mean a big difference in the energy efficiency of your home as well. Both things are better for your family and the planet, so there are no losers in this game. But it will take some work this fall.
What is winterizing?
Your home has all sorts of cracks and faults, but it doesn’t mean that things are falling apart. However, it does mean that you will need to tend to any places within your home where cold air could get in once ice and snow make their appearance. Furthermore, taking care of your appliances will help them to run more efficiently this winter and will decrease the chances of them breaking–and leaving you and your family in the cold. There are many things you can do to winterize and most of them are DIY:
Change the furnace filter
Every two months throughout the cooler times of year, change the filter in your furnace. A filter that is dirty or clogged will cause a decrease in airflow. So, even though you’re paying for your furnace to pump out the heat, you’ll only be feeling a portion of it through the vents.
Call your HVAC company for a tune-up
Many HVAC companies offer packages that decrease the costs of seasonal tune-ups on various appliances. Although it may seem silly to pay up front, having proper maintenance performed on your HVAC system will increase its life span and efficiency.
Install a programmable thermostat
We’ve all seen the joke of the dad sternly telling his family to “leave the thermostat alone.” All of us adults can get curmudgeonly about the rising cost of natural gas prices. The solution? Install a thermostat that you can program to keep your house comfortable. This is also an eco-friendly option, because you can make sure the house is at the lowest comfortable temperature at times when your family isn’t there. Less use of heat means more money in your pocket.
Seal the cracks
You have all sorts of little cracks in your home: doorways, holes where pipes are inserted from the basement, exterior cracks in the foundation or walls. Using a high-quality acrylic-latex caulk or expanding-foam sealant, you can fill any air-leaking spots in the exterior of your home. Then, attach new weather stripping to the doors.
Insulate the attic
One of the biggest warm air leaks of any home happens in the attic. Warm air rises, and if your attic isn’t properly insulated, you’re saying goodbye to much of the heat you are pumping into your home. If this project sounds too intimidating, call a professional to help. Any money you spend now will only be put back in your pocket come winter.
There’s nothing cozier during the winter than cuddling up with a warm blanket and listening to a blowing snow storm outside. But if you don’t have proper heat, you might be too cold for comfort this season. By planning now, you can do more than save money. You can create a more energy efficient home that is better for the planet.