Preparing your home for the colder weather months is cost-effective and better for the environment. Here are just a few tips offered by the Department of Energy to help you this cold-weather season:
- Insulate your “envelope” – Sealing and insulating the “envelope” or “shell” of your home – its outer walls, ceiling, windows, doors, and floors – is often the most cost effective way to improve energy efficiency and comfort. ENERGY STAR estimates that a knowledgeable homeowner or skilled contractor can save up to 20% on heating and cooling costs (or up to 10% on their total annual energy bill) by sealing and insulating.
- Insulate your water heater – Put an insulation wrap around the sides of your water heater. (But remember: Never put insulation on the top of the heater or near the bottom.)
- Seal air leaks – Warm air leaking into your home during the summer and out of your home during the winter can waste a lot of your energy dollars. One of the quickest dollar-saving tasks you can do is caulk, seal, and weatherstrip all seams, cracks, and openings to the outside. You can save on your heating and cooling bill by reducing the air leaks in your home.