Winter is here and it certainly is cold! Rather than running the risk of letting the brisk air into your home, there are a few quick and easy ways to increase the energy efficiency of your windows and doors without spending a lot of money. These few simple changes will not only help you feel warmer but help you reduce your utility bills because the furnace will not need to run as long.
Change Window Treatments
During the winter months, it is very helpful to change the window treatments on any windows that you feel a draft. There are a variety of energy efficient window treatments that are available at very low prices including quilted or thermal drapes. All it takes is a few minutes to switch out your warmer weather drapes for the energy efficient version and you could feel a drastic temperature difference in your home.
Let the Sun Shine
On the few days that the sun is actually shining, throw the shades and drapes back off of your windows, especially on the windows that have southern exposure and let the sun shine in. Not only will the Vitamin D help your mood, the heat from the sun will help heat your home up, allowing you to use the furnace less. Once the sun starts to go down, close the drapes back up to avoid letting more cold air in.
Install Storm Windows
Install storm windows over your single pane windows to cut out the heat loss. This is especially helpful if you choose low-e storm windows, which help to further reduce the amount of heat that escapes your windows.
Insulate the Attic
Your attic should have at least 6 inches of insulation in order for it to have any effect on the warmth of your home. A quick check through the attic opening will determine if you have sufficient insulation. If you do not, it is a rather inexpensive fix that will heat up your home and decrease your utility bills.
If you make one or more of these small changes around your home during these next few very cold weeks, you should feel a difference in the level of warmth in your home. This allows you to not only feel warmer but also enjoy lower bills and less wear and tear on your utilities, making your home more energy efficient.