Not to rush the end of the summer season, but now that the cold weather is approaching this winter is forecasted to be a rough one. The Farmer's Almanac predicts a "Shivery Winter" for 2013–2014, with below average temperatures for about two-thirds of the nation. So, it’s a good time to check your windows for leaks and replace the caulking if necessary. Here are a few ideas that can save money and improve the efficiency of your home:
Check for Window Leaks: Carefully place a lit candle and hold it near the inside of your window. If the flame flickers or bends, you likely have a draft or a leak.
Caulking Check: Examine the caulking around your windows -- inside and out -- to see if it is dried out, cracked or if there are missing pieces. Re-caulking in the summer can keep your house warmer in the colder months! Typically, one tube of caulking should cover a standard sized window. Be sure to follow instructions and you'll go a long way to keeping your house warmer!
Check Attic Insulation: Energy Star offers great advice about determining how much insulation is appropriate for your home. In general, no matter what kind of insulation you currently have in your attic, one quick way to determine if you need more is to look across the span of your attic. If your insulation is just level with or below your floor joists (i.e., you can easily see your joists), you should add more. If you cannot see any of the floor joists because the insulation is well above them, you probably have enough and adding more may not be cost-effective.
Assess Your Home's Efficiency: See how your home measures up! Take the EPA's Home Energy Yardstick test -- just answering a few basic questions about your home and you'll gain insights into how much of your home's energy use is related to heating and cooling versus other everyday uses, like appliances, lighting, and hot water; links to guidance on how to increase your home's score, improve comfort, and lower utility bills; and an estimate of your home's annual carbon emissions.
Hopefully, these tips will boost your home's efficiency and keep you a little warmer when the snow falls!
Keeping your home warm during the winter can help to prolong the life of your house's vital systems, not to mention lowering heating bills, which often skyrocket during the cold season. At Andrew G. Gordon Insurance, we make it a priority to help protect your livelihood, and our home policies provide wide coverage for both your home and possessions.