“September is a good month [to winterize your home],” says Peter Menyhart, owner of Menyhart Plumbing & Heating Supply. “People need to start when you get those nights where you know temperatures will drop.”
Here are five easy tips for ensuring your home is fully prepared.
Check your furnace filter. When winterizing your home, the first thing to do is check your furnace’s filter. A filter that’s been in place for several months will have a buildup of dust and debris. “[The furnace] is going to be running harder and working harder,” Menyhart says. “That’s going to cause your gas and electric bill to go up.”
Secure your roof. Make sure your roof is in good shape to brave the winter winds this year. If any shingles are damaged or missing, the warm air inside your home can leak outside. “Every few years, keep an eye on the roof just to make sure, especially if there’s a lot of trees around,” Menyhart says.
Insulate your attic. An easy and affordable way to keep your house warm this winter is to insulate your attic. It prevents air leaks, which make your house a little colder and your heating bill higher. “[Insulation] helps keep the heat in the house because typically heat rises,” Menyhart says. Opt for blown-in insulation for older attics and spray foam insulation for newer homes.
Seal all drafty windows. If you have drafty windows, Menyhart suggests buying some plastic film from your local store. “You take that plastic and put it around the window,” Menyhart says. “Then take a hairdryer, heat it up a little bit and it sticks to the windows.” Window insulation kits can cost anywhere from $5 to $30.
Maintain your fireplace. You can’t cozy up next to a fireplace that’s in bad condition. A fireplace should be inspected and cleaned at least once a year to ensure that it’s safe to use. Once it’s deemed good-to-go, make sure to open the flue before lighting that first fire. “If you forgot to open it and just started a fire, you could have gas or smoke backing up into the house,” Menyhart says.
8:00 AM EST
September 11, 2019