Weatherize Your Home

Cost Saving Tips for Staying Warm this Winter

1. Installing a programmable setback thermostat can be a convenient and effective way to control heating costs without sacrificing comfort. You can set it for a warmer temperature while you're home and a lower temperature at night and also while no one is home during the day.

2. A dirty furnace filter can drive up the cost of heating your home. Check your furnace filter frequently and replace it or clean it as needed.

3. A humidifier - either on your furnace or as a separate unit - can help control heating costs. That's because you feel warmer in moist air and can set your thermostat lower.

4. Adjust register openings to keep various rooms of your home at the desired temperature. Remember that heat rises, so you may want to partially close upstairs registers.

5. Use draperies, blinds, curtains, or shutters on all windows to slow the loss of heat through the glass. Keep window coverings open on sunny days to let in the sun's warmth. Close them to insulate against cold outside air at night.

6. Rearrange furniture for winter, placing it next to inside walls, instead of outside walls, and away from windows. Avoid blocking heating registers and air returns with furniture, draperies, or carpet.

7. Use kitchen, bath and other ventilating fans sparingly in cold weather. In just one hour, these fans can blow away a houseful of warm air.

8. If you have ceiling fans, make sure the mountings are snug and tight. Use clear caulking to seal any leaks you may find as even minor cracks around the base can let in lots of cold air.

9. Purchase some inexpensive, precut insulation gaskets and seal out the cold air entering your home through electrical switches and outlet plates, particularly those on outside walls.

10. Closets and cabinets on outside walls can leak a great deal of cold air, so make sure the doors fit snugly and keep them tightly closed.

11. Apply caulk while the temperatures are between 45 and 55 degrees everywhere that a door or a window meets the siding of your house, at corners, and where the wood structure of your house meets the foundation.