Getting Your Home Ready for the Winter
Posted: September 27, 2012
Your HVAC system and hot water heating accounts for 60% of your home’s energy usage!
During the cold winter months, to keep warm homeowners turn on their home heaters. You can save energy when heating your home by taking the time to winterize for maximum energy savings. Due to the increasing energy costs, winter heating will consume an increasingly larger portion of a household’s energy budget.
Keep the following tips in mind as you begin to winterize your home.
Check for Leaks
- Weather-stripping and caulking are the least expensive, simplest, most effective way to reduce energy waste in the winter. If you home is improperly sealed you can waste 10% to 15% of a home’s heating.
- Check around doors and windows for leaks and drafts. If there are any add weather-stripping or caulk any holes. If your windows leak badly, consider replacing them with newer, more efficient ones.
- Every duct, wire or pipe that penetrates the walls, ceiling, or floor has the potential to waste energy. Seal them all with caulking or weather-stripping.
- Electric wall plugs and switches allow cold air in. By pre-cutting foam gaskets behind the switch plate you can effectively prevent leaks.
- Examine your house’s heating ducts for leaks. If there are any repair or replace them.
Check Your Home’s Insulation
- Ensure that your home is properly insulated. Begin by weather-stripping and insulating your attic hatch or door to prevent warm air from escaping out of the top of your house. In addition, seal holes in the attic that lead down into the house, such as open wall tops and duct, plumbing, or electrical runs.
Check Your Heating System
- Replace your heater’s air filter monthly, and clean and remove any dust from vents or along baseboard heaters.
- Consider purchasing a set-back thermostat that allows you to automatically turn down the heat when you’re away, at work, or sleeping. You can always boost the temperature to a comfortable level when you need it. Using a set-back thermostat can cut heating costs from 20% to 75%.
- Make sure all heating vents are opened and unblocked by furniture or other items. This will ensure that the air is evenly distributed through the home.