One way we can keep ourselves warm is to winterize our houses. Not only does winterizing our homes keep us warm, but it also saves us money! Research shows that homeowners who weatherize their homes save up to 14% on utility bills, which translates into a sizable chunk of cash considering how high utility bills are getting these days.
OK, so let’s get on with our home winterizing checklist:
Caulk it. Go around to all of your door frames and windows and make sure you’ve got good weatherproof seals. Most heat loss in homes comes from tiny cracks between doorjambs and window sills. Believe me, even if you can’t see the crack, you’ll definitely feel it later in the form of leeching cold.
Use high quality silicone caulk. Silicone caulk is the only caulk that is weatherproof, shrinkproof and waterproof. Silicone caulk goes on smoothly and resists yellowing and cracking. It costs a bit more, but the investment pays off in the end.
Be sure to caulk both inside and outside – go all around window and door frames, applying a nice smooth line that will protect you from the elements.
And since you’re going to be spending the day around the house, it is a perfect time to inspect your house for other wintertime hazards.
Look for loose or missing roof tiles. No sense trying to keep the cold out if you’re going to let the rain in.
Visually inspect your fascia and soffits. Make sure there is no visible sign of rot on the wood and be especially watchful for gnaw holes or missing chunks of wood where wintering squirrels can’t get into your house. Squirrels are a nuisance, to say the least. And they’re impossible to get rid of once they’re inside of your walls….gnawing away at your electrical wiring.
Speaking of squirrels, wintertime is also rodent time. It’s cold out there and the food sources have dried up. Rats and field mice are going to be looking for a warm place to curl up with plenty of food nearby.
While you’re out caulking your windows and doors, and inspecting your fascia and soffits, do yourself a huge favor and inspect the foundation of your home too. Look for gaps between the base of the house and the top of the foundation where rodents might get in.
Take care of your house and it will take care of you. For more information on weatherizing your home, you should inspect annually to assure that your house is bundled up tight.
Related articles: Replacing and repairing rotten fascia and soffit.