The holidays and winter are just around the corner. The last thing you want to worry about is a spike in your energy bill. Peoples and PA 2-1-1 Southwest are available to offer guidance and support during the cold-weather months, but first, here are some ways you can weatherize your home and stay warm through all your holiday prep.
‘Weatherizing’ your home doesn’t have to be difficult or expensive. You’ll want to start by checking the following areas:
Doors and windows: Use caulking or weatherstripping tape around doors and windows to create a barrier around the frames. If your double-paned windows are no longer doing their jobs, you can “fake” storm windows by adding 6-mil plastic around them, or following the instructions from an easy-to-use window sealing kit that you can pick up at the local hardware store.
Crawl spaces, attics, and garages: These areas are prone to extreme shifts in temperature, so an easy way to weatherize them is to add insulation to the walls and ceilings. Insulation is not just for the house’s framework – insulating sheets and blankets can be used on your ductwork and hot water heater to keep in the heat.
Wall outlets: This usually surprises people, but heat can certainly escape through wall outlets. Use plastic protectors, like you would use in baby-proofing, to plug outlets when they’re not in use.
Fireplaces: Finally, if you have a fireplace, you’ll want to clean and check the chimney, especially the flue, for cracks or breaks to make sure it’s sealed and performing properly.
While these are all things you can do to prepare your home for winter, the best way to stay toasty and energy-efficient is to maintain your home’s heating system. Regular checks and maintenance will keep your heating system running at its most efficient.
Preparing the home for winter can cause a hardship for some people. For those who might be struggling to make ends meet during the cold-weather months, PA 2-1-1 Southwest is always available to link community members in need to helpful resources. Some may qualify for Peoples’ Usage-Reduction Program (formerly LIURP), which may help weatherize a home and make it more energy efficient.
Peoples and PA 2-1-1 Southwest are dedicated to working together to ensure people in our community are warm all winter long. Help is just a 2-1-1 dial (or text/chat) away.