The leaves are starting to turn and those chilly winter winds are right around the corner making it the perfect time to start preparing for winter. In this article, you will find TECO’s checklist on improvements you can make to increase your energy efficiency.
The first item on Tower Equipment’s winter energy efficiency checklist is your windows as they may be what makes or breaks your energy bills this winter. Windows can be a weak spot in an otherwise reliable home especially if you have single pane windows. If you do not have the funds to make the investment on new energy efficient windows yet, try out some of these smaller options you can use to save money on your energy bill this winter.
- Fill in Gaps – When your existing windows were installed there could have been possible air leaks left behind. Installers need a little wiggle room when sliding windows into place, which leaves gaps around the window’s edge. A good contractor will seal all these gaps with spray foam insulation, but sometimes this step isn’t taken. If the area around the window is cold this could be why. Hire a professional or if you feel confident in your skills now may be a good time to add spray foam around your windows for better insulation.
- Change out old weather stripping– The weather stripping around your windows may be old and cracked. Now is a good time to replace it with new weather stripping and increase your energy savings.
- Window Insulating Kits– If you are looking for a temporary fix and you do not mind the look, try an insulating kit. It is a clear plastic that clings to the glass which blocks out the harsh winter temperatures. It is a cheap option that you can pick up at your local hardware store!
Windows are not the only place your home or business that could be wasting energy check out the rest of our winter-ready checklist:
- Store all outside hoses and turn off the outside water to avoid freezing.
- Drain your sprinkler system and turn it off for the winter months to avoid freezing and damage to your system.
- Avoid Sludge and buildup in your gutters by cleaning them out before the snowfall; look over your roof in the process to make sure nothing is wrong.
- Check over your chimney with a flashlight. During these cold temperatures, birds and animals look for hot places to make their nest. Check your fireplace damper while you are at it to make sure it opens, closes and seals tightly.
- Have your HVAC (heating, ventilation, air conditioning) system serviced to make sure all is running smoothly!
Keep in mind, every HVAC system needs maintenance too! They are like a car if you never get them serviced something is bound to break. When getting ready for the winter months you should keep this in mind and give your HVAC system a ‘tune-up’ like all mechanical systems. If you haven’t had your system checked here are some signs that indicate that your system is running inefficiently:
- Higher than expected energy bills based on your previous month’s energy usage
- Replacing dusty dirty air filters more frequently than usual
- Inconsistent air flow from your ducts
- Drastic temperature differences between rooms