Winter can make a house rather chilly quicker than usual. Believe it or not you can keep your home warm and keep your family nice and cozy without driving your energy costs through the roof. We’ve got several simple tips to protect your home from the cold this winter and possibly save you a little money along the way:
- Ensure You Have Adequate Insulation: Insulation is a key element to keeping your home warm. Insulation is built within the walls of your home, but that still doesn’t cut it sometimes. You can further insulate your windows using window insulation kits which are often inexpensive and easy to install. You might also consider adding additional insulation in the attic or crawlspace, to trap heat from escaping your roof and help prevent ice dams.
- Consider Caulking: Caulking is an effective way to keep your home warm by sealing the gaps, cracks, or air leaks around your home. The key places to caulk are windows and also walls because over time wear and tear can cause air pockets that allow cold air to seep into your home. Caulking helps ensure warm air doesn’t escape. A good way to test these areas is to light a candle and hold it along the inside of the window or wall, if the candlelight begins to flicker that is a telltale sign you have a draft coming in.
- Install Fireplace Plugs: Fireplace plugs are a great alternative if you are hoping to keep the open look of your fireplace or if you really don’t want to install a fireplace door. The fireplace plug is a balloon that you simply blow up until it fits nice and snug at the top to block the cold air flow. The plug has a great safety feature since it is designed to pop or contract if you were to accidentally light a fire while it was still in there, which could be very dangerous.
- Replace the Furnace Filter: It’s a good habit to replace your furnace filter regularly. Over time, the furnace collects buildup and dust that begins to settle and can clog the filter. This can decrease the airflow of the heat coming out of the vents. Decreased airflow is an indication that it is time to replace your filters.
- Move Furniture Strategically: If you have your couch, bed, or chair blocking a vent or radiator, consider switching the layout of the room to allow space for the air to flow freely and circulate properly.
- Close the Curtains: During the day, keep your curtains open to allow the natural sunlight in. This sunlight can add a good amount of heat your home. When the sun begins to set and the temperature starts to drop, you should close the curtains to block the cold air that can come through the windows.
- Keep Doors Closed: Try to keep doors closed around your home as much as possible, especially the ones that aren’t used as often. The more you open and close any doors the more it allows the heat to escape and the cold air to affect the heat you have created in other areas. If you do have to open exterior doors often, consider using something to stop the draft such as a door sweep, or make your own door snake.
Take extra care in winter months so you can not only avoid costly damages,but avoid costly energy bills too!