With the first hard freeze and first snowflakes of the season here in Chicagoland, it’s time to prepare to do battle against the energy goblins, those little things that can cause your winter energy bills to go through the roof! Here are some simple tips to make sure your home is ready for the cold months ahead:
- Make sure all of your windows are closed and firmly locked. This may seem like a no-brainer, but many people forget to actually lock their windows, which allows heat to escape around the edges of the sash. Locking them causes the weatherstripping to seal tightly, so lock them up tight!
- You also might want to lock storm doors and entry doors (including deadbolts) even when you are home. Again, this snugs the weatherstripping tight within the door frames, keeping out the wind and weather.
- Change your furnace filter. A dirty filter causes your furnace to work harder to keep your home warm, raising your energy costs in the process.
- Additionally, have your furnace professionally serviced to catch any small issues that could turn into something major. A $100 investment in a service call could save you hundreds on a failed furnace that results in a late night or weekend call to the heating company.
- If you don’t already have one, invest in a programmable thermostat. That way, you can preprogram your furnace settings for various times of the day. For instance, set your heat at 62 degrees or so at night while you are sleeping (you’re under the covers, so you’ll be plenty warm even at this temperature), then schedule the temperature to kick up to around 70 degrees or so shortly before your alarm goes off. That way, your home will be toasty warm when you get up, making it a little easier to get out of that warm bed! If your house is not occupied during the day, you might want to kick it down to the mid 60’s while you’re gone, again, scheduling it to get a little warmer shortly before you return home. Many of these thermostats even have separate weekend settings so that you can set up a comfortable temperature for those days that you are home.
If you follow these simple suggestions, you should see a decrease in your winter heating costs. And, if you still notice drafts around windows or doors even after locking them tight, it’s probably time for an upgrade. Call us at Evergreen Door & Window at (708) 423-1720 to visit our website at http://www.evergreenwindow.com to schedule a professional consultation. Our energy efficient windows and doors will help you save energy, paying you back for your investment in very little time!