Forget about raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens. Our favorite things are the ones that can help protect your home and save you money during the cold winter months! Winterizing your house can combat the cold and keep heat inside where it belongs. With a few simple tips, a couple of hours, and the help of your local Friedman’s, your home will stay cozy warm until springtime.
The first thing you can do is wrap your pipes. If your pipes are warm to the touch, they could benefit from some extra padding. Heat loss through your water pipes can add on extra costs, but wrapping your pipes can be an easy and cost effective solution. Pre-slit foam is available and simple to use – simply cut to size, slip it over the pipe, and secure with duct tape. Consider your pipes wrapped just like that brown paper package tied up with string!
Weather stripping and caulking around doors, windows, fireplaces and corners can also prevent heat from escaping. Drafts and small cracks can cause your furnace to work overtime and put a strain on it. By checking areas where air may be escaping, you can help your furnace last longer and save money on your heating bills. There are a few easy ways to check for unwanted air flow. You can take a candle or incense stick close to the walls or windows in the areas and see if the smoke wavers like there’s a small breeze. Or you can have someone stand on the other side with a hair dryer when you hold a candle – and if the flame blows out or flickers, you’ve got a leak. A simple swipe of weather stripping or caulk will plug up those gaps and seal in the heat.
Most ceiling fans have a switch that can change the rotation of the blades. In winter, make sure your fan is turning clockwise. This helps pull the heat down from the ceiling, instead of pulling it up like you want to do in the summer. It’s also a good idea to drain air conditioning lines and hoses, as well as take window A/C units out of windows and into storage. A closed window will always keep more cold out than the unused fan system. If you have excessively drafty windows, consider replacing them with higher efficiency storm windows, or for a temporary fix, purchase a roll of window insulating cling to block out the wind.
Getting your house ready for winter can be easy and inexpensive. A few quick jobs around the house will save you money on your heating and energy costs, as well as keep you toasty warm in the coldest nights. For more of our favorite things and to learn more about winterization products, come and see us at your local Friedman’s home improvement store!