Baby, it's cold outside!

The weather outside is finally changing. Everyone is donning their puffy winter jackets. One thing everyone does during the winter is try to make themselves comfortable with the frigid temperatures outside. Here are five elements that you can look at in your home that will keep you, your family and your wallets comfortable.

  1. Heating - I think the biggest problem everyone has during the winter, is turning the thermostat to the extreme. The house doesn’t have to be a balmy 80 degrees in the winter. By installing a programmable thermostat, you can set it to heat the house and hold it at a certain temperature, while even turning off when nobody’s home. Also, by lowering your thermostat by 2 degrees you are able to save 120 gallons of gas, at $3 a gallon that’s a huge price to pay.
  2. Insulation - Insulation is a homeowner’s best friend. Not only does it keep the cold out, but it keeps the warmth in. Making sure your home has adequate insulation in the attic prevents hot air from escaping. Insulating your hot water pipes also prevents heat loss and doesn’t strain your water heater to work harder; this also prevents your pipes from freezing and bursting. The government also provides incentives for people who do this.
  3. Windows and Doors – Have you noticed that draught coming from the front door? Not only is it making you colder, but it’s wasting your hard earned money. Consider sealing those draughts with weather stripping or a little caulk; maybe even buy storm windows/doors. Even heavy drapes will decrease the amount of energy lost through your windows.
  4. Appliances – You should really look into having your furnace or boiler serviced. Residue over time builds up and the boiler will run less efficiently, so an in-shape boiler could be the difference between a colder house and an empty wallet or a cozy home and an extra holiday gift or two for the family.
  5. Human Behavior – You should be doing this anyway because it’s so cold outside. Your daily habits have a great impact on efficiency. Dressing in layers let’s you manually control your own level of comfort. So don’t be shy, let’s see that crazy sweater Aunt Mabel bought you last year. It may be good for something after all!
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