As the temperature continues to drop, it is tempting to stay cozy inside – but don’t wait until it’s too late to take important winter maintenance steps to keep your home safe and reduce energy costs. Here are some helpful suggestions to save your home from having winter issues.
Install storm doors and windows.
Better insulation will increase energy efficiency. Seal cracks with caulking and place barriers around doors and windows to prevent drafts, which often waste 5% to 30% of your energy according to the U.S. Department of Energy. By keeping the heat in and the cold out, you will stay warm while saving energy and money.
Change furnace filters or replace your furnace.
Making sure you have clean furnace filters once a month will help increase airflow and decrease energy demands. If you are in need of a new furnace, consider spending a bit more on a modern machine to increase heating efficiency rates and decrease energy utility costs.
Check your air conditioner and water lines.
Drain pipes and hoses to be sure you don’t have water pooled in the equipment. Seal any water leaks, and remove window air conditioning units, to avoid leaks and drafts during the cold months.
Clear the leaves.
Although fall is over, be sure to remove any lingering leaves and debris in your gutters. The leaves and debris can mix with water and cold temperatures to form ice dams, causing leaks.
Check your fireplace.
Many homes in Silicon Valley have fireplaces, which are great for additional warmth, but be sure the chimney is cleaned, and the top is capped or screened to keep out rodents and birds. Be sure to stay aware of Bay Area “Spare the Air” days, which limit times you can burn wood.