Don’t fall behind! Prep your home for autumn and winter
As school buses resume roaming roads and the sun starts setting sooner, it won’t be long before autumn arrives. Yet before pumpkin pie aroma fills the air and Halloween costumes decorate storefronts, you can still take advantage of the late summer to prepare your home for the fall and winter. Some suggested considerations include:
TACKLING DIY PROJECTS: You can take advantage of the warmer weather and longer sunlight hours. Fortunately, the most intense heat is (likely) past, making it more comfortable to be working on your home to-do list. If there is a project you’ve been meaning to tackle, there’s no time like the present. And if you’re looking for inspiration on some energy efficiency projects that can lower your home’s energy use, we have ideas at www.PowerMoves.com to get you started.
HVAC INSPECTION: You may feel relaxed since your air conditioner just got you through summer. Although temperatures are milder, now’s not the time to forget about your HVAC system! It won’t be long before you’ll be reaching for your thermostat to turn on the heat. Before you do, it will be a good time to schedule an inspection of your heating and cooling system. You can consider a “clean and tune,” in which an HVAC professional will inspect and clean the blower, coils, and the elements or burners.
CHECK AND SEAL AIR LEAKS: People frequently think that drafty windows are the reason that their homes are expensive to heat in the winter and cool in the summer. In many circumstances, air leaks at the top and bottom of the home are the culprit, letting treated air escape the house while at the same time bringing in unwanted outdoor air. You can check on common air leak sources, such as gaps near plumbing stacks and ductwork. While isolated gaps may not seem like a big deal, together they can add up to a lot of air escaping your home, leading to your HVAC system working harder than it should — and costing you money.
CONSIDER A HOME ENERGY AUDIT: If you want a deeper dive into energy use (and waste), consider an energy audit. This will include an in-depth analysis of your home’s energy consumption, a blower door test, and actionable steps you can take to improve your home’s energy efficiency. Taking those steps will help reduce your home’s energy use, helping to save money on your monthly energy bill.
Taking steps now can prepare your home for the bitter winter temperatures. You can help minimize your energy costs, and taking care of any HVAC issues now will lower the risk of your system breaking down and needing emergency repairs. You also can contact your local electric cooperative’s energy advisor for information about scheduling a home energy audit, and you can get more energy efficiency ideas at www.PowerMoves.com.