Block energy leaks inside and outside your home
When people decide to plug up drafts in their homes, they usually think of making changes inside their houses. While those efforts, like caulking or adding weather stripping, are effective in reducing heat loss, there’s plenty that can be done shoring up the home’s exterior as well.
Checking for holes and cracks in the exterior is important. Although searching from the inside out is helpful, it doesn’t reveal everything. Check for cracks where the siding meets the foundation as well as anywhere wires, cables or fuel lines go into the house. These are places that may be fine one year, then open the next due to simple wear on the home.
Review the exterior condition of doors and windows. If there’s a gap between the bottom of your door and the floor, you’ll want to block it up. You can purchase a door insulation guard for main entries. To get the maximum benefit, they can be installed on both sides of a door.
For entries that aren’t visible to outsiders or not opened frequently – interior doors that lead to a basement, for instance – you can use a sand-filled door blocker or stuff a towel underneath the door.
Lock every window to ensure the tightest fit between the window and its frame. For added protection from winter weather, think about putting up some heavy curtains that will help keep the cold air from getting into the room.
Check the insulation
If you reside in a house and have access to the attic, take a peek to make sure it’s insulated. Heat rises, so the first place that hot air will escape from is the roof. A well-insulated attic or roof will increase your home’s heat retention.
Insulation materials are available at home improvement stores and can be installed yourself or by a contractor. Make sure your insulation measures at least 7 inches in depth. If there’s existing insulation, this is also a good time to check on its condition, because damaged insulation may cause other problems, including mold.
Once the exterior is put in order to conserve heat, consider outfitting your home’s chilly spots with ceramic heaters. Small electric space heaters are energy efficient and save money on utility bills by adding to the home’s main heating source, but only in places where you need it most.
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