Winter Home Improvement Tips

Most people wouldn’t think of the end of the fall or early winter for home improvements, but making small home improvements can save you big on your home energy costs this winter.

Let’s look at some winter Home Improvement ideas:

The fireplace – Getting our fireplace ready will certainly yield to better savings. Make sure that the dumper is tightly sealed when not using it. A small space would let the cold air rush in and send the warm air out. If you are using an electric heating system, an opening in the fireplace will mean a lot more work to maintain a warm, energy efficient home.

When you decide to use the fireplace, you can turn down your heater. This will save you as much as 8% on heating cost.

The furnace – The furnace will work extra effort if the filter is full of dirt. This will equate to home energy waste since the furnace will consume more power against the service it brings. To avoid this, make sure that your filter is clean. The owner’s manual will tell you how to clean the filter. A clean filter will let you breath clean air around your house. A clean filter saves you 5% on heating cost.

The duct – Small leaks in the duct will certainly result in lost heat so make sure that this is regularly checked. Insulate the ducts by wrapping it with R-6 or higher fiberglass. Never use cloth-backed tapes. You can also wrap them with UL-approved metallic or plastic tapes and mastic sealants. Note that leaking ducts make your heating system work 30% more so make sure they are sealed and secured.

Solar heat – You don’t need to have solar panels on your roof to use the sun as a source of heat. All you have to do is use open your drapes during the day to warn your room without using electricity. Just close them at night to keep the warn air inside. Reduction of the use of heating system during the day will let you cut as much as 10% on your home energy consumption. Now that’s being efficient!

Openings – Openings around your doors, windows, and joints will let cold air outside come in and the warm air from your home go out. Make sure that these openings are sealed with either sealant or weatherstripping. It will help reduce the work of the heating system immensely.

The Thermostat – A programmable thermostat or a centralized heating system will let you save on heating costs. The programmable thermostat will let you set your desired at a specific period of the day. This is very useful if you are leaving your home or are going to sleep overnight. The centralized heating system on the other hand will give you the ultimate control of the temperature of every room. These 2 will let you decide how warm any one room can be. One interesting thing to note is that a centigrade lower on your heating system will let you save as much as 5% on your heating cost.

Many people neglect to truly prepare their homes for the winter season, and as a result, they pay for it big time in sky rocketed utility bills. Why? Because you need to warm you home and that doesn’t come cheap these days. This consumes the biggest portion of our electric bill. Fortunately, there are measures we can take to lower our utility bills during the winter season.

But for those who are conscious enough to notice, winter means larger electric bills. Yes, it is true. Aside from summer, winter is the season of the year where your electric bills skyrocket to digits that cost you financial burden.

As you can see, there are many trouble spots in your home which require some attention during the winter season.

3 Big Reasons Why Small Home Improvements Make Good Sense

Do you think big when it comes to improving your home? You’d be forgiven for thinking along these lines, and yet there is a lot to commend the idea of thinking on a smaller scale.

If you need convincing, perhaps these three reasons will help. As you are about to find out, small improvements can be just as good – if not better – than big ones.

1. They’re much cheaper and thus more affordable
Small home improvements are indeed cheaper. Instead of building a new extension, why not redecorate a room and repurpose it instead? A spare bedroom could be repurposed into an office by replacing the bed with a sofa bed and adding a computer desk instead. You’ll have to spend money on the furniture of course, but it is cheaper and more practical than finding the money for a new conservatory or extension.

2. Small changes can still make a big visual improvement
People tend to forget this aspect. Certainly, a new extension would have the wow factor, but it would also be expensive and difficult to afford for many people. If you want to improve your home you can easily redecorate a room or change one aspect of it – such as the colour of the walls. Try changing the scatter cushions on a sofa or adding some mood lighting; you might be surprised at how different the outcome is.

3. Small improvements can help to reduce the chances of needing bigger improvements later on
In this sense we’re talking about the likes of preventative improvements. For example, if you have wood framed windows they will gradually rot away unless you take regular steps to protect and preserve the wood. If you have painted frames you will need to check their condition and maintain them every year or two. If you do this, they’re only likely to need a quick sand down and a fresh coat of paint. You can also check the condition of the putty holding in the glass and replace any sections that require it. Compare this treatment to the situation you’d find yourself in if the frames rotted and you can see how the cheap and easy upkeep is better than not doing anything and paying for new windows as a result.

As you can see, it isn’t always necessary to spend a significant sum of money to get the result you want. Before you go for the big home changes, think about the small changes you could make quite easily (in a weekend, perhaps) that would improve the look and feel of your home. You may be surprised how many possibilities you come up with.