As it gets cooler outside, it is time to weatherize your home. Why is this important? Just a few reasons:
- It protects the exterior and interior of your home from the effects of weather.
- It keeps you comfortable inside your home all winter long.
- It can save you money on your energy bills and ensure your HVAC equipment is running at peak efficiently.
- It addresses potential issues now, preventing headaches down the road.
- It can stop insects and pests from entering your home through small entry points.
Here is your Weatherization To-Do List:
- Check the fireplace
When you are not using your fireplace, close the flue. Even better? Have a glass door installed with vents at the bottom for a better seal from outside air.
- Change air filters
Depending on the type of air filter you use and how much your system runs, it is best to clean or replace it every 30-90 days. Dirty filters are bad for many reasons, including causing your HVAC system to work harder, not as efficiently as possible, because of restricted airflow. It also hinders the removal of pollutants from your home’s indoor air (dust mites, mold, pet dander, dead skin, allergens, viruses and more).
- Check ceiling fan rotation
Make sure your ceiling fans are running in the right direction in the winter – clockwise – so the warm air that has risen will be pushed down. Running ceiling fans helps support your HVAC system in heating up the house because they keep air circulating, so your system doesn’t work as hard.
- Seal air leaks
Check each window and door of your home for drafts and seal those off. Caulking and weatherstripping are effective yet simple DIY solutions. Sealing leaks not only helps your furnace function better, but it lowers your heating bill as well.
- Schedule an HVAC maintenance appointment
This is so simple, but many homeowners skip it. We highly recommend having your HVAC system serviced professionally twice a year (in the spring before using the air conditioner for the first time and in the fall before using the furnace for the first time). Even if everything is working well, this kind of preventive maintenance is important for the life of your HVAC system, addressing any issues before they turn into expensive repairs or replacements.
- Lower your thermostat
You will save money by lowering the temperature in your home, even just a degree or two. You can always add an extra layer of clothing or curl up under a blanket. With time, your body will adjust, and you will enjoy the lower heating bills too. By using a programmable thermostat, you can program it to automatically adjust the temperature while you are out of the house too (e.g., at work), so you don’t have to remember to change the temperature before leaving your house. (For more ways to save on your winter heating bills, check out this blog post.)
- Consider adding more insulation
Make sure your walls, attic and basement are well-insulated to save money and energy.
- Turn down your water heater
Lower the temperature of your water heater to 120 degrees Fahrenheit to reduce your bill. Regular water heater maintenance every six months is also important. You can hire a professional or do it yourself.
While there are many ways to further weatherize your home, these eight will go a long way.
Stiles Heating, Cooling, & Plumbing is ready to help get your home ready for winter. We can perform an energy audit on your home, offer weatherization recommendations, service your HVAC system and more. Call today for more information or to schedule an appointment.