Green Updates: Heating and Cooling

Inexpensive fixes to make your home more energy-efficient

Who wouldn't want to cut energy costs? These small fixes will make not only a big difference in your home's heating and cooling efficiency but in your power bill.

Get an energy audit

Not sure where to start? Many energy providers offer free energy audits of their customers' homes. They can show you how to maximize the energy efficiency of your home. A power- and water-saving home will conserve money and is more valuable in the long run. Plus, you can use the money you save for more updates!

Make your doors leakproof

Begin by sealing up areas where heating and cooling may be escaping. Weatherstrip around doors and windows, and caulk gaps where wires and pipes enter your home.

Seal up leaks in air ducts

You can also improve how heating and cooling is circulated within your home by sealing leaks in air ducts, by changing your furnace filters regularly and by insulating any ducts that lead under the house or through any areas that aren't insulated.

Get your water heater under wraps

You can lower the cost of heating water in your home as well. Wrapping your water heater, lowering the thermostat and insulating hot-water pipes can keep you from pouring money down the drain.

Create an icy-cold attic

No matter how warm you want your home this winter, make sure one room is cold: the attic. A freezing top story means the airspace is properly ventilated to protect the roof, preventing condensation inside and ice dams outside.

If the heat is spilling up through the cracks, look for the culprit. Check plumbing pipes sticking up through the floor, recessed lighting, hatch doors, chimneys and electrical fixtures. Fix the holes with soy caulking or eco-friendly insulation.

Now sit back and watch the energy savings pile up!

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