September 8th, 2014 9:41 AM by Jackie A. Graves
As summer fades out and the first hints of fall arrive, thoughts start to turn
to boots and sweaters and parkas and snowball fights. But before we start
changing out our wardrobe and preparing for snowfall, there are a few things we
should do to our home.
Air leaks throughout house
Air leaks are one of the primary sources for energy loss in a home, and energy
loss means money loss. There are steps you can take to check for and eliminate
them. "When checking your home windows and doors for air leaks, start with
a detailed visual inspection from both the interior and exterior of your
home," said Lifehacker.
"On the outside you should look for areas where the old caulking has failed,
revealing the gap between the window or door frame and your home's
They also recommend "inspecting
the threshold under each door, looking for daylight or other obvious signs of
an opening that is too big and needs to be sealed shut, making sure that the
weather stripping around the windows and doors is in good condition, and
checking old single-paned windows for damaged glazing, which can make the home
"vulnerable to expensive heat loss."
you've discovered the air leaks in your home, you can set about sealing them
up. "More often than not, a fresh layer of exterior-grade caulking will
adequately seal shut any gap or crack that is causing you problems. New weather-stripping
or an adjustable threshold can help to seal shut the gaps around your home's
storms caused problems in areas throughout the country, and in many cities, no
roof was spared. If you have yet to have yours checked out, you may want to do
so before winter comes and brings snow with it. A call to your insurance
company should produce a free visit to come check its condition.
it's been awhile, you'll want to do a check of your filters throughout the
house to make sure they are clean so air can flow through them smoothly.
"According to Energystar.gov, the
filters on your home system likely need to be changed either once a month or
once every three months, depending on the type you're using," said Allstate.
"You should check the product information on the filters for the
manufacturer's suggested frequency of change. Depending on where you live, the
time of year, and how much you're using your AC or furnace, you may end up
having to change your air filter more frequently. For instance, during a steamy
summer when you're running your system constantly, you may end up having to
change the filter more often than if the weather is nice and you're relying on
also time to change out the batteries in your smoke detectors. While you're at
it, check and clean out your dryer vent at the same time, clearing any buildup
of lint since this can cause a fire.
to the place where you actually want a fire in the winter. To keep it safe,
you'll want to inspect this area as well. Woodburning fireplaces need to be
cleaned because of the potential for buildup of soot and creosote. Gas
fireplaces should also be checked for debris and to make sure the chimney
structure is secure with no cracks or crumbling mortar joints.
you've checked off this list, your home should be in good shape to get you
through another fall and winter.
Written by Jaymi Naciri
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