Prepare your Home for the Winter Season – Top 15
October 1, 2013
I know I know… We don’t want to talk about the Winter either! However, it is our job to inform and educate our home owners so they can save energy, money and prevent wear and tear in the cold months to follow.
1. Switch your ceiling fan in the opposite direction. Warm air rises and changing the rotation of the blades will force the warm air down to ensure you are cozy and comfortable
2. Maybe you are in the market to convert to gas. Who doesn’t love a fireplace in the winter? Unfortunately wood burning fireplaces tend to lose more energy than they produce. Both vent-free systems and direct-vent systems are excellent for heating and fairly inexpensive to operate.
3. Check smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors. We recommend changing your batteries twice a year and if your alarms are 5 to 10 years old, it is time to look into a new one.
4. We put the FUN in FUrNace. Make sure your furnace is running efficiently and will get you through the winter with out any hiccups or late night emergency NO HEAT phone calls. Change your air filters every 1 to 3 months depending on the filter you use.
5. Chim Chimney, Chim Chimney, Chim Chim Cheree! Have your chimney swept out to avoid possible chimney fires. Burning wood releases volatile gases that cool and condense forming flammable creosote. Also make sure your damper is in good working order.
6. Window cleaning time. In spring and fall it is best to wash your windows and check for any cracks or damage to caulking. A clean and unobstructed window in the winter can be a great source of heat from the sun.
7. How airtight are your windows. Weatherstripping between the sash and window frame is an excellent way to eliminate the “paid for” hot air that is escaping from your home.
8. Install storm windows. Again this helps to reduce warm air leaking to the outside. You can buy interior or exterior storm windows and some can be removed and stored away in the hotter months.
9. Change the ambiance with your furniture. Pull seating closer to a fireplace or heat source vent for a cozy winter. Bring fleece or soft chenille blankets to keep away the chill. Keep in mind that dark, warm colours create a sense of psychological warmth.
10. Gut Check time. Clean out your gutters and flush your downspouts with a strong stream of water before the snow arrives. With the rare and windy summer we just had I am sure there will be extra debris. Check that the gutter is flush with the house and that there are not any cracks or damages.
11. Switch your switchplates. Even though only 2% of air leakage is through your electrical outlets and switchplates, it can be very easy to fix. Check your local hardware store for Outlet Gaskets.
12. You wouldn’t wear a tank top in the winter. Storage water heaters use energy/money to heat the tank all day long. You can save on your utility bills by switching to a Tankless water heater. Unfortunately, up front the tankless water heating systems are substantially more of an investment.
13. Plug up hidden leaks with the dollar bills you will save. About 30% of the cold air that enters your house is from hidden leaks such as pipes, vents or electrical conduits run through the walls, ceiling and floors. Use insulating foam sealant for larger gaps and caulking for smaller leaks.
14. Frozen pipe daiquiri. Not a very appetizing beverage throughout the winter. Check your local hardware store for insulation foam blankets that can be wrapped around your pipes keeping the water flowing.
15. What is in your attic? Check the attic to make sure you have a recommended depth of about 12 inches of insulation.
Now that this is all said and done, you be sure to have an amazing and fun filled fall!
Do you decorate your house for Halloween? Any interesting new idea’s or costumes?
If you have any questions, concerns or require additional information please feel free to comment below or contact us at any of the sources provided. firstname.lastname@example.org, 519.579.5330, Twitter @HoggMechanical, Facebook Hogg Heating & Air Conditioning