Prepping your home for the winter months is a great way to make your home more energy efficient. During the winter months is generally when our electric bill is at it’s highest. I never gave it much thought before, and I actually believed it was normal.
Then I had the chance to get involved with Project Envolve, and my whole outlook on energy efficiency changed. I learned that prepping your home for the winter months can be easy and relatively inexpensive, and can be done on a Saturday morning.
It is so much fun to get the entire family involved with home improvement projects. After all, besides your family, your home is your biggest investment. I know it is the center of everything that is important to our family.
One of the biggest moves we did this year to improve our home’s energy efficiency was to replace all our windows. They were original to the house, and they were not the best. The insulation on them was almost non-existent, and we were losing a lot of heat through them.
But I know that most people can’t afford to have their windows replaced like we did. But there are a lot of simple and inexpensive things you can do to make prepping your home for the winter months easy.
Prepping Your Home For The Winter Months:
So here are a few simple things you can do to start prepping your home for the winter months. I got everything I needed at Home Depot in one quick trip.
- Install draft stoppers for the outside doors. Our front door is still our original door, and will probably be next on our list for replacing. In the meantime, the draft under the door was pretty bad.
See, almost no insulation left under the door. So I purchased a hard door stopper that slid right onto the door. It was easy to cut-to-fit to the door, and provided much better insulation. What a difference!
No more leaky drafts under that door, and a bonus is that the creepy crawlies can’t get in, either!
- Protect the outside faucets. Since our house is 18 years old, the insulation around the outdoor faucets isn’t good. We also have been having some pretty harsh winters, so I wanted to make sure that the faucets were protected and there were no air leaks from around the faucets. The solution?
Hard faucet covers. The inside is styrofoam, and there is a spongy material along the bottom. You simply slip it over your exposed faucet, and then tighten to get a nice fit.
So if we get a lot of snow or freezing rain this Winter, our faucets will be protected, as well.
- Insulate outlets and light switches connected to the outside walls. I never really paid much attention to the power outlets on the outside walls until we had our windows replaced. With no air leaking around the windows, you could feel it by the outlets. So when I popped off the outlet covers, I was surprised to find this:
Absolutely no insulation around or in the junction boxes. With the cover off, you could really feel the cooler air coming in. I found a great solution for that!
These outlet sealers were the perfect product to help with the air leaks. Since they were pre-cut, installing them took only a few seconds, and made a huge difference.
I took it one step further. On the outlets that we weren’t using, I added child safety plugs. They blocked the cold air even further, and were inexpensive to purchase. Who knew they had this secondary use!
- Bring the sunlight in. During the winter months, I spend more time in the kitchen. Why not turn that into an energy efficient room, too! So I replaced our ceiling can lights with LED Daylight bulbs. As you know, LED lights use a fraction of the energy of traditional bulbs, last longer, and now I have the added benefits of daylight when it’s dark out!
- Change the filter on the heat pump. While I haven’t had to turn the heat on yet(knock on wood), I wanted to make sure that the heat pump would be functioning as energy efficient as possible. Changing the filter is an inexpensive and easy step in that process.
- Make sure the vents are dusted and clear of debris. I learned in an earlier mission about the importance of clear vents, and how using a vent deflector can help keep your home cool. Same goes during the winter months when it comes to heat.
I took a few minutes and grabbed my new favorite tool:
I went around and dusted all the registers and vents to make sure that they were clear from any blockages. This allows your heat pump to work efficiently, which in turn, improves your energy efficiency and lowers your electric bill. Total win. Who knew that prepping your home for the winter months could be so much fun.
As you can see, prepping your home for the winter months doesn’t have to take a lot of time or rack up a huge bill. Most of these tips can be completed in a matter of minutes, and make a big difference in the comfort level of your home.
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How will you be prepping your home for the winter months?
*I am a Project Envolve ambassador and receive product and/or compensation for these posts. Project Envolve is part of the PPL Electric Utilities Corporation. All opinions and ideas are 100% my own! #Project Envolve #GetEnvolved