Winter weather is hard on the home. The cold causes things to shrink and crack, while the snow may cause humidity issues. Taking a few steps to winterize the home can save you from some of these damages and help you feel more comfortable while it is cold. It can also save you a few bucks on your heating bill.
Here are 5 budget-friendly tips to help you prepare for the winter.
1) Seal Drafty Doors and Windows
Drafts are those currents of cold air you feel when inside the house. If you can fix them, you’ll help to preserve warmth inside the home, which will save you money on your heating bills. Sealing door gaps is also effective for keeping mice and other pests out of the home this winter, when infestations are common. If you have been seeing pests, call Oshawa Pest Control or another professional near you.
Hold a lit candle while standing in front of each window. If the flame flickers, the window in front of it has a draft. You can fix these by filling the cracks in their window frames and adding locks. Then, check your doors to the outside and add weatherstripping to their bottoms if there is a gap. No more wasted heat.
2) Increase insulation
Insulation upgrades cost an arm and a leg. So, before you renovate the attic, try adding some rugs to your floors. Rugs help to insulate the floor and keep you cozy. Then, switch to thermal curtains. Heavy, thermal drapes are good for keeping the temperature you want indoors. If you have old, rattling windows, try adding some an insulating film from the hardware store. You can also close off the rooms that you don’t use much in the winter, like the solarium, and give them draft stoppers.
3) Clean out the gutters
Cleaning the gutters is a chore, but it can save you hundreds of dollars in damages. Clogged gutters fail to let water flow off the roof, which causes flooding and water damage. Ice dams may also form in the wintertime, which can tear off the gutters, damage the shingles, and trap ice water on the roof.
Empty out the gutters before it’s too late in the season. Climb a ladder to reach the gutters, then scoop everything out into a bucket. Wear a pair of gardening gloves and use a gutter scoop, if you have one. When you’re done scooping, use a garden hose to flush all the remaining debris out. Watch the flow of the water and adjust the angle of the gutters if need be.
4) Put away patio furniture
Caring for your patio furniture is easy and cost-efficient. Move your furniture into a shed or garage so they don’t get damaged by rain, snow, and dust. If you have nowhere to store them, move them near the side of the house and protect them with some waterproof covers. This investment will help to prolong the use of your outdoor furniture, preventing rust and wear.
5) Maintain your HVAC system
Change the filter in the HVAC system to improve energy efficiency and keep the air clean. Filters get dirty over time, making it harder for your heater to push air through the house and driving up your heating bill. Turn off your HVAC system, then remove the filter and replace it with a new one. If your current filter can be cleaned, bring it to the shower and rinse it clean in there.
If you haven’t had your system looked at in a long time, you may want to have it serviced by a professional.