Many of us were not prepared when winter came roaring into northeast Ohio earlier this month. Maybe we thought the forecasts were inaccurate. Perhaps we were caught off guard because it was nearly 70 degrees just two weeks before the first snowfall! Whatever the reason, it’s not too late to weatherize your home for the cold months ahead. Here are a few DIY tips for cutting down on chilly drafts, reducing your heating bills, and slashing your overall home energy use this winter.
1. Do a walk-through of your home – Check around windows and doors for cracks, holes, drafts and leaks. Make sure also to check electrical outlets, fireplaces, attic spaces and heating vents. Install weather-stripping or caulk around holes and openings to help prevent cold air from seeping in.
2. Inspect your heating system –Check the furnace filters and replace them as needed. Your furnace will function more efficiently with a clean filter. Have a professional check and clean the system once a year to prevent buildup and keep things running efficiently.
3. Stop heat loss with curtains – Swapping out lightweight summer curtains with thermal lined curtains or drapes can help keep chilly air from leaking in through window cracks, keeping your home warm and lowering your heating bill.
4. Check the fireplace — If you have a fireplace, make sure you plug the flue when it’s not in use.