10 Tips to Prepare Your Home for Winter

The North Country winter can be tough on the household budget.  Check out 10 tips for preparing for winter that will help you save energy and reduce costs.

  1. Make sure your old light bulbs are replaced with LED bulbs. There is less day light in the winter time, and we all use light bulbs more often. It’s this time of the year where it makes a difference.
  2. Windows are a big factor when cold air comes in. Windows that are not going to be used can be covered in plastic. That will give an extra barrier to the cold coming in.
  3. Plastic also works for your attic door especially if your attic isn’t insulated.  Heat rises and cold sinks; it sinks right into your house.
  4. Doors are also a big factor when it comes to air coming in. Put a door sweep or a wrapped up towel below the door where there is typically a gap.
  5. If you see a hole on the outside of the house where wires or pipes come in, put caulk in the hole so cold air doesn’t find its way into the house through just a small hole.
  6. If you used a window air conditioner for the summer, make sure you take it out. Putting plastic over the window and air conditioner unit won’t always work. The air conditioner is made to pump air into your house so it has great ventilation, which works against you in the winter.
  7. If you have a second floor or room that isn’t being used, close it off.  You can put plastic on the windows and close the door.  Keep the heat just high enough so the pipes don’t freeze in any unused areas of the house.
  8. To lower your energy cost every month, lower the heat in your home. Setting the heat to 68 instead of 72 can dramatically lower your energy bill.
  9. Consider pipe wrap on your hot water heater pipes. The heat that is expelled as the water goes through the pipes will lose less heat if it’s insulated. That means your water heater won’t have to work as hard.
  10. Make sure your furnace is cleaned and tuned. Just a little can make a difference. Not only will it lower your energy cost, it will make it safer too. The last thing you need is for your furnace to go out in the middle of the winter just because it’s dirty.