ecoFab: Tips to Prepare Your Home for Winter

First step: Seal Air Leaks.
Just as you wouldn’t want your roof to leak during the rainy season, you wouldn’t want the cold air leaking in or the warm air leaking out either. But air leaks are truly illusive; they occur not only at doors and windows, but at a variety of joints and junctions throughout the house. Applying caulk and weatherstripping to windows and doors is a good first line of defense. (No, the sock monkey stretched across the bottom of the door does not work just as well). Your best bet: hiring a professional to seal all the air leaks and balance the air flow in your home. This professional treatment would improve your indoor air quality, achieve appropriate ventilation, and optimize the functionality of your furnace.

Second Step: Turn down the Thermostat.
When you are home and awake set your thermostat as low as is comfortable. It is a silly human habit of ours to think that we need to feel that same sultry summertime 73⁰ when it is dark at 5pm.  Winter is “favorite sweater” weather and sweaters always feel better when it is cool. Additionally, if you turn your thermostat back 10⁰ to 15⁰ for eight hours, say when you are asleep or out of the house, you’d save around 10% a year on your heating bill.  Don’t worry about your indoor pets; they have fur coats of their own.  Your house plants will also be happier during the dark months if you control heat and humidity.

Third Step: The Chimney Sweep.
Even though sooty boys with brooms are of a bygone era, chimneys and all manner of vents should still be kept clean. Cleaning flue vents, furnace filters and ductwork will do wonders for your fall and winter air quality and keep your heating system running strong throughout the cold months. Of course, do service that HVAC system that started this whole discussion in the first place.

For more information, call 206.450.2062  or email.