Ideally, we should begin winterizing our homes as soon as possible. While the things we normally do are geared toward keeping our home warmer and helping us lower our power bill in the winter and reduce energy loss; the tips below will also help keep your homes cooler and bills lower in the summer. So, in other words, there really is no wrong time to winterize your home!
Add an Area or Throw Rug to Keep Your Space Warm and Stylish
Most of my home, like many of y’all’s, has tile and hardwood floors. And if you don’t, let me tell you; that stuff is cold in the winter! The thing about cold floors is that they radiate cold into the rest of the room. There is a pretty quick and easy fix. Add an area or throw rug. Not to mention the added benefit of a pop of color and freshness it adds to any space! It keeps the cold out, the heat in, and your energy bill down. Whoop Whoop!!
Don’t Forget the Fans
It is also a good idea to reverse the direction of your ceiling fans. This pushes the hot air down and helps recirculate the air throughout your home.
Move Furniture to Boost Home’s Energy Efficiency
Moving your furniture off of the floor vents improves your home’s energy efficiency. It’s also a good way to get your hunny to help you move the furniture around like you have been wanting to do for a while now... This will not only give your home the new look you’ve been wanting, but it will save them the money they’ve been wanting. It’s a win-win for EVERYONE!! Also, if there are any rooms that you don’t or aren’t using, shut those doors.
Sunshine on a Cloudy Day
Spread the sunshine! There is nothing more beautiful than letting the sunlight shine through your home. Open the curtains on the south/west side of the house during the day to get the most of the sun's warmth and close up at night to keep out the cold.
Wine and Hot Chocolate... I mean Preparing the Fireplace
Who doesn’t love sitting in front of the fireplace with a nice glass of wine or cup of tea or hot chocolate. And if you’ve already been running your fireplace this season and haven’t had It professionally
cleaned, now is the time to do it. A certified chimney sweep can remove flammable creosote from the flue. They will get rid of any obstructions such as leaves, twigs, debris, and animal nests, which we all probably have plenty of after this hurricane season, that may cause drafting problems. A clean chimney is a safe and efficient chimney. Also, have your furnace serviced to make sure that it is running properly and safely. Don’t be like us and wait until it’s cold and you have to wait a week for a service person to come out. Which is why it’s always a good idea to have a back up heating source included in your home winterization plan.
Our chimney is a huge source of heat loss come wintertime. If not in active use, plug it up with a chimney balloon when winterizing your home to keep drafts out and heat in. Drafts and air leaks increase your heating costs, so make sure your windows and doors are also sealed tight with weatherstripping. In a drafty room, heat escapes under the door. When winterizing your house, place draft guards by the doors to prevent heat loss. It's a smart, simple, and easy solution that keeps your home warm. Any remaining gaps in siding, windows, or doors can be filled with caulk. For extra drafty windows and doors, caulk the inside too, removing moldings to fill all gaps in the insulation. Although it may not be the most fashionable tip, window insulation film can keep up to 70% of heat from leaking out of the windows. You won't mind the appearance when you're home is warm and toasty!
Check Your Ducts
Our house is old! Pier, beam and all the duct work is under the house. Check the duct-work where it is exposed . Over the course of a year raccoons and other visitors may pull at it, tear it, or loosen it from the registers. Many of us Midtowners find ourselves having to repair a few ducts. And while you are checking you may want to consider insulating it as well. This helps keep the heated air warm as it moves through unheated spaces under the house or in the attic.
Stopping the Cold
Your stove’s exhaust fan can also be a source of cold air leaks if not sealed proper. I adore my stove’s exhaust fan. It keeps the smoke detectors from singing me the song of their people.
Which brings me to my last and probably most important tip. While we have already “fallen” back, daylight savings is a good reminder to change the batteries in your smoke and carbon monoxide detector(s). But if you haven’t done so yet, now is just as good a time as any
I hope these tips and reminders were helpful! Stay warm! Stay safe!