Winter’s cold is fighting its way inside your home and a snow bird escape down south is out of the question. What can you do to save money, energy and make your home more livable? There are large jobs like replacing the water heater with a more efficient unit, but there are plenty of easier places to start. First, let’s find those nasty air drafts by using an incense stick, cigarette or matches to create a small smoke stream. If you pick a fairly windy day even small air leaks will become obvious. Hold the incense near the following locations and look for smoke swirls: Entry door and trim edges, window and trim edges, outlets and switch plates, fireplace dampers and baseboards.
Make a list of the worst offenders and seal up those leaks! Use new weather stripping on doors and windows. Caulk leaking trim. Remember that foam insulators are available for outlets and switch plates. Glass door kits can seal up a leaky open fireplace. Single pane windows may benefit most from shrink film insulation kits, which can also seal trim leaks. Lastly, put a cover over any window air conditioners. Just remember to tackle the big leaks first and work your way down to the small ones.
Also, to save on heat bills when you are away, consider a programmable thermostat, which can lower the home’s temperature while you’re gone and heat it up just before you get home. This winter you can be warm and cozy!