As we recently mentioned in a post about gas fireplace inserts on our BelRed blog, fall is upon us. The night temperatures are beginning to drop and it’s time to start thinking about how to make your home as efficient as possible this winter. As you’re aware, heating your home and keeping it performing at a high standard requires preparation. In this blog post series, we’ll bullet out some tips to make sure you’re ready for anything winter can throw at you when it comes to challenging your home’s energy efficiency and performance.

 

  • Inspect and clean your furnace. Having your furnace regularly inspected and cleaned not only can make your home’s heating system safe, it can also save a ton of money if you experience a cold winter. The more efficient a furnace and HVAC system is, the less energy it will require to run. This is especially true when it’s bitter cold and the furnace has to work extra hard to keep your home at a comfortable temperature. Again, ensure that the air filters are properly changed and plan to change them based on the recommended timeframe. Be sure to check your thermostat setting on your furnace to find a good balance between energy efficiency and heating needs.
  • Inspect your fireplace and chimney each year. While some may think that chimneys and fireplaces don’t need regular care or inspection, many fireplaces can be dangerous when left alone. This is especially true in older homes with fireplaces and chimneys that are decades (or more) old. It’s important to also talk about the difference in care between a wood burning fireplace and gas fireplace when it comes to care and maintenance. While a wood fireplace may save you money by burning wood instead of expensive fuel, they must be inspected and cleaned each year to ensure safety in your home. The typical gas fireplace, or fireplace insert, only needs to be inspected on a yearly basis. Regardless of type, chimney and fireplace inspection is a must, and autumn is a great time to do it. If you inspect your chimney and find cracks, it’s best to contact a professional to repair, as this can be dangerous if not done properly.
  • Check all window and door seals. Many homeowners all but throw away money by not inspected and fixing cracks and other air leaks around their doors and windows. Even the slightest leak and cause a great deal of energy and warm air to escape from inside the home. Be sure this isn’t happening to you. While there are some great visual tests you can do yourself, it’s often best and most thorough to contact a professional, such as BelRed, to performance energy audits on your home this time of year to alert you to any problems that may have escaped the untrained eye. Remember – a little bit of weatherstripping or caulking can go a long way toward saving you money this winter. Now is the time to make sure it’s in place.

 

We’ll be following up this post shortly with some additional fall home energy tips to add to your checklist. At BelRed, we’re all about high home performance and saving you energy (and money!). Don’t hesitate to reach out if you’d like a personalized assessment of the best ways you can prepare for the cold months ahead with BelRed’s help.

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