Fall leaves and cooler temperatures are great but what does that mean for your home? That winter is right around the corner! Here at True Clean Restoration we have compiled a list of small projects that you can perform to not only keep your home safe from winter damage but also save money on heating costs.
1. Place a draft guard at the base of outside doors. This can be a simple as a folded towel or you can get creative and sew one!
2. Run ceiling fans in reverse. Counterclockwise will make you cooler but clockwise will send the warm air that rises back down into the room and make you warmer.
3. You can reduce your water heating costs by 6-10% if you set your water heater down from 140 degrees (and save yourself a nasty scald) to 120 degrees.
4. Adjust your thermostat. No need to heat your house when no one is home. A programmable thermostat will do that for you.
5. Make sure all caulking and weather-stripping is installed and in good condition.
6. Have your furnace tuned up and don’t forget the simplest furnace maintenance – change the filter.
7. Make sure any garden hoses are disconnected, drained and stowed away neatly. Shut off the water supply to spigots.
8. One place you lose a lot of heat is your fireplace chimney. Plug the chimney with a chimney balloon or be certain to close the flue to reduce hot air being lost up the chimney.
Now that you have the simpler projects tackled, it’s time to get a little more complicated.
9. Installing storm doors and windows can increase their efficiency by as much as 45%! Look for Energy Certified models.
10. Winterize your Air Conditioner and water lines. Drain any hoses and air conditioning pipes and make sure no excess water is pooled in equipment. Turn off the AC water shut off valve. Remove or seal window air conditioners so you don’t invite cold drafts.
11. Boost insulation.
12. An old fashioned but very effective thing to do is plant a windbreak. A row of trees to block the wind can reduce your heating costs.
Here at True Clean Restoration, in addition to carpet and duct cleaning we are available 24/7 to restore your home from water damage and any resulting mold (we also do fire restoration) But below are ways to prevent that damage in the first place.
Frozen water pipes cause pressure to build and can result in the pipes bursting at their weakest point. Pipes in attics, crawl spaces and outside walls are particularly vulnerable to this concern, especially when they are subjected to extra cold air coming through utility line holes. Follow these tips to help keep pipes from freezing.
1. Fit exposed pipes with insulation sleeves or wrapping
2. Use caulk to seal cracks and holes in outside walls and foundations near water pipes.
3. Keep cabinet doors open during cold spells to allow warm air to circulate around pipes, especially in the kitchen and bathroom
4. Allow a slow trickle of water to flow through faucets connected to pipes that run through an unheated or unprotected space. (If your house is going to be vacant during a cold spell, consider draining your water system)
When your home’s heat melts snow, water runs to the edge of your roof (where the temperature is cooler) and freezes. Over time, this ice can build up, preventing drainage and forcing water into your attic or walls.
1. Keep gutters cleaned and remove debris from your roof. Replace any lost shingles.
2. Keep your attic well ventilated. The cooler the attic, the less melting and refreezing on your roof.
3. Keep your attic floor well insulated to minimize the amount of heat rising through the attic from within your house.
4. If possible, eliminate recessed lighting near your roof. Heat generated from such lighting melts snow, which then contributes to ice dam buildup.
True Clean Restoration wishes you and your family a safe happy fall and a great winter!