Making a few changes to winterize your house can definitely be beneficial to your bank balance in the colder months. Not only will you save money on your utility bill, but your house will also feel much healthier and cozier when the mercury drops.
Here is how to winterize your house in one weekend with these 9 energy conserving suggestions.
1. Change dirty filters
During winter your central air and heating system needs to be in optimal condition. Changing out dirty filters will unblock airflow and increase efficiency. It will also ensure the air you’re breathing in is cleaner; dirty filters aren’t effective for filtering bacteria, mold, and other illness-inducing particles.
2. Block off drafts
Small cracks around windows and doors can cause drafts and leach warm air. This causes your heating system to work harder than it needs to. By air sealing trouble spots in your home, you can reduce heat escaping and cut utility costs. There are a couple of affordable DIY methods you can use:
- caulking for sealing cracks and openings
- weather-stripping snakes for around doors and windows
3. Window insulation
Windows are a big cause of heat loss in winter, and while double glazing is one answer, it’s not the cheapest solution. You might want to think instead about thermal backed drapes, or installing window insulation film. This latter method provides an extra layer to prevent heat from escaping through window panes. It’s best to install window insulation film before winter when there is less moisture on the window.
4. SMART temperatures
Controlling the temperature in your home can shave dollars off your utility bill. All you need is a programmable thermostat which automatically adjusts the temperature to your schedule. You can set it to come on when you need it and turn off when you don’t. Change of plans? WiFi access will allow you to override the customized setting from anywhere, so you’re not wasting money heating an empty home.
5. Gutter covers
If you have nearby trees, and you don’t want to have to clean your gutters continuously in winter, then install gutter covers. Gutter covers are an effective way to prevent leaves from clogging up pipes and will help keep water flowing freely. They give you peace of mind that you won’t have to deal with water damage in the roof and ceiling of your home.
6. Wrap your pipes
If you live in an area which gets snowfall in winter then you need to insulate your pipes. Wrapping pipes with insulation will stop them freezing and you won’t have to wait as long for the hot water when you turn on the shower. All you need to do is get some pipe foam at the hardware store (this often comes pre-slit), wrap it around the pipe and secure it with duct tape.
7. Passive heating
Power cuts are more frequent in winter due to storms, so you may want to look at ways you can heat your home passively so you won’t have to rely on electricity as much. Get into the habit of opening the curtains each morning and closing at sunset to conserve heat. Use a smaller room of the house for living in, preferably one near the kitchen. Use a draft stopper to prevent heat from escaping under the door, and close the doors of all unused rooms.
8. Use a candle heater
Another way to warm up a room passively is by using a candle heater. All you need is a clay pot and some tea lights if you want to make one, or you can buy one online which looks more decorative. This green energy device takes the thermal energy of the candle flame and converts it to heat. As the pot slowly warms up, so does the air around it.
9. Put on a sweater or snuggle under a blanket
Last but not least, wearing a few wool layers indoors will add 4 degrees of warmth to your body. If you cool down you can always put on another layer, rather than rely on turning up the heating. Wool or fleece blankets can also make your home feel like a cozy nest that your friends and family will want to spend time in.
These suggestions are all easy solutions to the question of ‘how to winterize a house?’ and won’t break the bank. Though it depends on how much you want to spend on a sweater or a blanket…cashmere anyone?
Author’s Bio: Angela Pearse is a blogger for Zumper who frequently combines travel with freelance writing. She’s passionate about Art Deco hotels, historical novels, Netflix, hiking and healthy living.