Here in Texas, we’re lucky to have only a few weeks of truly cold weather every winter, but much of the country (and our Canadian customers) are still in the depths of winter. In the cold months everyone wants to be toasty in their home but no one wants to waste energy or money. Regardless of where you live, home insulation and furnace maintenance are essential to keeping costs down and the temperature up.
A well- insulated home is the best way to trap the heat indoors and keep the arctic outside. Here are a few inexpensive and quick fixes to keep the drafts out:
• Line your doors and windows with weather-stripping
• Caulk holes or cracks around doors, windows and floors
• Hang thermal/insulated panels or drapes over your windows
• Install foam gaskets under light/outlet plates
• Inspect the chimney damper
It is recommended that you have your furnace inspected every fall to make sure that everything is in working order. If you’re still noticing that your house is struggling to stay toasty try these efficiency-improving tips:
• Replace air filters to improve air flow
• Patch leaky ductwork and seal the joints between sections
• Install a programmable thermostat
Many power companies offer free or low-cost energy audits of your home. This is a great service to provide a baseline of where energy-efficiency improvements (especially for heating/cooling and insulation) can be made. With this information, you can develop an energy-improvement plan and enjoy a warmer home in future winters.