Continued from Part I: Winterizing your Home

Winterizing your home can be a lengthy process, but for northerners, it’s extremely important to help save money and avoid any frost-related accidents.

Furnace Checking your furnace is extremely important. You should check your furnace about a month before the cold weather rolls in to make sure it’s working well. This tip can save you, since around Christmas, money can be tight. Through the winter season, you should change your furnace filters about every month. Some filters are very inexpensive or can even be cleaned and it can save you money on your next bill.

Reverse your fan A simple trick to use in the winter is to reverse the direction of your fan. In the summer your fan turns counter-clockwise, which circulates the hot air towards the ceiling. In the winter, if you reverse your fan to clockwise position, it will push the hot air downward.

Don’t forget the Water Heater Winterize your water heater by insulating the lines and turning it to the warm setting. If you have an electric-powered water heater consider blanketing it with faced fiberglass. Also, wrap any pipes that run outside of your house to avoid losing heat. This should also apply to cold water pipes, since they are more likely to freeze and burst.

Check your chimney Possibly one of the easiest ways to lose heat in the winter is through your chimney. Make sure you have your chimney inspected before using your fireplace. It’s best to contact a chimney sweep early in the year, since they will be much less busy and pressed for time. Another good idea is to buy a cap for your chimney for the off-season. This will help prevent birds from nesting in your chimney or rain from collecting. Of course, it’s important to cover your chimney whenever you aren’t using your fireplace, and you can find some very good seals that won’t allow cold air to seep in.

Woodstoves While woodstoves are much less common in newer homes, having a wood-burning stove can present problems for your winterizing plans. The first thing to keep in mind is that these stoves need to be swept more than once a year, performed every ¼ of ash build-up. To ensure that your woodstove doesn’t allow cold air into your home, make sure your stove has a glass door and that it remains closed whenever the stove isn’t in use.

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