We’ve winterized homes and mobile homes and have learned many tricks along the way to reduce home heating costs. These DIY, ‘on-a-shoestring’ tips do not require large investments of money. Cut your energy consumption with these green ideas. Some of these tips will sound like ‘no-brainers’, but maintenance and repair technicians assure me that these are routinely over-looked by homeowners and tenants.
Lock your windows: New windows are almost unilaterally made with locking closures. Replacement windows often open from the top and the bottom. Both sashes move. If the window is unlocked the top window slides down to let air in. Many windows lock with a lever attached to the bottom window sash, that rotates a metal hook. The hook passes under the top window sash and locks the window. Older windows lock with by rotating a metal tab. Locking windows creates a vacuum. This prevents warm air from exiting the house and cold air from entering the house. Vinyl replacement windows have gaskets or rubber strips that seal off when locked. Windows are the largest source of heat loss in a home. Be sure that all the windows in your home are locked.
Install rubber weather-stripping flaps along the bottom of security and entrance doors. These flaps will prevent air from passing in and out under the door in the gap between the threshold and door. Check these flaps regularly to make sure they aren’t damaged. Keeping door flaps in good repair will reduce heat loss and energy costs.
Place rolled towels or decorative ‘draft dodgers’ between double-hung windows and along window sills and doors. ‘Draft dodgers’ are the novelty name given to stuffed fabric tubes placed along doorways and window bases to prevent air leaks. This simple ‘green’ tip can save a great deal on energy costs.
Clean furnace filters and replace regularly. Dust trapped in furnace filters not only makes your furnace work harder and reduces efficiency, it’s unhealthy, unsanitary and unsafe. Want to be extra green and save some green? Don’t replace your filters all the time. Vacuum furnace filters or blow the dust out with a leaf blower or air compressor. Clean your furnace vents and dryer vents regularly, too. If you live in a region that gets snow, keep outside furnace vents free of snow. Outside dryer vents have flaps; clean these flaps and tube regularly. Using the wand on your vacuum, vacuum out the lint filter, too.
These tips can cut your heating and energy costs dramatically and they cost you nothing in money and little in time. For more DIY home maintenance, please visit linked blogs.