Winter is coming...how to prepare your home to save money

How to prepare your home to save money this winter

HUNTSVILLE, AL (WAFF) - Winter is coming and you may want to prepare your home to save money on the heating bill.

Huntsville Utilities communications director Joe Gehrdes said the key is to check windows and doors around your home for openings.

“Check your weather stripping, and if you don’t have any weather stripping, you’ll probably want to look into doing that, because what you want is a good seal on those windows and doors so you’re not heating outside,” he said.

The Huntsville Utilities website also recommends wrapping hot water pipes and hot water heaters to provide insulation, reducing the amount of energy needed to warm the water.

Gehrdes said most fixes could be made with a quick trip to a hardware store, so WAFF 48 News went to Lewter Hardware Co. in Huntsville to check out some prices, here’s what we found:

  • 6 feet of pipe insulation: $3.59
  • 17 foot roll of foam window seal: $3.59
  • Rubber door bottom seal: $4.59
  • One can of caulk: $6.59
  • Water Heater Cover: $24.99
  • TOTAL COST: $43.35 

Other Huntsville Utilities tips for the winter included:

  • Check Your Attic Insulation:  In most homes, one of the most significant areas of heat loss is through the ceiling.  Make sure your attic has a level blanket of insulation that completely covers the ceiling joists.  Insulation levels are measured in R-values and Huntsville Utilities recommends a minimum of R-25 and an optimum level of R-38.  Attic access openings and pull down stairs located inside the structure should also be insulated and weather-stripped.
  • Zone Heat: In very cold weather, zone heating can help keep your bill low but should not be used on a consistent basis due to possible mold problems. Close the doors and vents to the rooms that you are not frequently using and heat only the most important rooms in the house. You can do this if you have gas heat or an electric furnace but do not try it with a heat pump or an air conditioner since it may cause damage to the compressor.  Also, try not to zone off the area in which the thermostat is located.
  • Open and Close Your Curtains: Open your curtains on the south side of your house during the day. The sun sinks approximately 30 degrees to the south in the winter and will provide significant heating effect during the day. Close all other curtains day and night to reduce heat loss.

Copyright 2018 WAFF. All rights reserved.