Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Weatherizing Your Home for All Seasons

With the winter months fading slowly in our rear-view mirrors, it’s time now to think about keeping your home operating efficiently as we move through spring, summer and fall. Follow these tips to not only remain comfortable in your home all year long, but also save money and increase the longevity of your property:

Turn it Up (Or Down): While it may seem like reverse-logic, setting your thermostat to a higher temperature during spring and summer and lower in the winter will cut down on energy costs. When you are traveling, you can also increase or decrease the temperature settings (depending on the season) while you’re away to save even more money.

Close it up: No matter what the season, it’s important to make sure doors are shut and HVAC vents closed in rooms that you don’t frequently use. This will increase the efficiency of central air or window air conditioner units you use to cool off when the weather gets hot and will prevent warm air from escaping any heated spaces. You may want to have your air ducts, windows and doors checked by a professional for any leaks to prevent bleeding.

Blowing in the Wind: If you live in a property without a central heating or cooling system, installing ceiling fans is an effective and inexpensive way to circulate fresh, cooled air throughout your home. During the winter, reversing the direction of the fan blades can help circulate heated air around living spaces. Ceiling fans can be purchased at major home improvement stores and can be easily installed.

Seeing Things in a New Light: Not only do compact fluorescent (CFL) bulbs give off less heat than incandescent bulbs, they also reduce your home’s carbon footprint by using 65 to 70 percent less energy while lasting 10 times longer than traditional bulbs. CFL bulbs come in a variety of design to fit all sockets and can be used throughout your home all year long.

Batten Down the Hatches: Don’t forget to give the outside of your home a visual inspection, most importantly the roof. Keep an eye out for rotting or damaged shingles. Making sure your gutters are clear all year long is another way to prevent water damage and ice dams as the seasons turn. Trim dead or branches that hang over your house to prevent one of those limbs from falling and potentially damaging your home during thunder or snowstorms.

Following these simple solutions can help you operate your home more efficiently, safely, and keep you and your family comfortable no matter what Mother Nature throws at you.

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