Have you had one of those days yet? One of those, “uh oh, winter is almost here” days? The first signs of frost on the morning lawn, or the first day you break the winter parka out of storage?
As the first inklings of winter sneak up on us, it’s time to start preparing our homes for the season, particularly for those who live in an area where frigid winters are common. Below, we’ve compiled a checklist of ways to winterize for the most eco-friendly season possible (without turning your home into an indoor skating rink).
- Survey the exterior of your home: Are there any cracks or gaps where warm air can escape? Be sure to check gutters, windows, doors and vents in particular.
- Purchase weather striping or caulk to seal any leaks around windows, doors or other entryways into your home.
- Insulate all exposed pipes.
- Have your vents and ducts professionally cleaned for more efficient heating/circulation.
- Research products that can insulate your attic. There are a number of items on the market that help prevent warm air from escaping up and out of your home and which will save energy and money on heating costs. Be sure to look for alternatives to traditional insulation(cellulose and spray foam are a few options).
- Check your smoke detector and carbon monoxide detector batteries.
- Consider your landscaping. Plant trees close to your home (particularly evergreens for winter), as they act as a windbreaker and actually help keep your home warmer.
- Consider purchasing blackout curtains to keep the warmth in.
- Install an eco-friendly furnace filter to keep your air clean, and be sure that your furnace is in complete working order/have it serviced before the coldest months hit.
- Invest in energy-efficient appliances and heating systems.
- Stock up on cold-weather comforts – organic blankets, pajamas, hot chocolate, soups, etc.
- When the temperatures finally take a turn for the worse, try to keep your thermostat at 68°F.
In upcoming posts, we’ll be covering more tips for an eco-friendly holiday season, so be sure to check back! Until then, use the cold weather excuse to break out the organic hot chocolate and get in the cozy-up-for-cold-weather spirit. Cheers!