Now that we’re into November, it won’t be long before the cold, snowy temperatures hit many areas of the country – that is, if they haven’t already. Though this winter isn’t predicted to be as fierce as last year’s, these regions can still expect to face frigid temperatures and heavy snowfall. To prevent yourself from getting caught off guard by the winter weather, it’s important that you prepare your home for the season before it hits.

5 Ways To Save Money & Energy This Winter

Prepping your home for the cold months ahead is essential for your comfort and safety, as well as your wallet. Here are 5 tips for winterizing your home that will help you save energy and money all season long.

  1. Install a programmable thermostat: According to the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), installing a programmable thermostat can save an estimated 10 percent a year on heating and cooling costs. You can use your programmable thermostat to set back your heater when you are out of the house or asleep.
  1. Reverse the ceiling fans: Though many people think of fans as a way to keep them cool, many fans have a switch that reverses the direction of the blades.  Running your fan in a clockwise direction will create an updraft and force the warm air down into the living space.  When you use your fan you can lower your thermostat and save some bucks on your energy bill.
  1. Insulate the walls, attic and air ducts: Up to 25 percent of a home’s heat is lost through small cracks and holes throughout a home, the DOE reports. Installing an effective insulation product, such as closed-cell spray foam, will prevent air and moisture from escaping or entering.  If you suspect there are drafts or moisture in your walls, attic or air ducts, have an insulation expert in Virginia take a look to assess your home’s insulation.
  1. Weatherstrip or caulk the windows and doors: Use weatherstriping or caulking to seal your windows and doors and prevent drafts and warm air from escaping. Apply weatherstriping caulking at the meeting point of two different building materials, including corners.
  1. Get your heating system professionally inspected: It’s recommended to get your heater and furnace inspected each fall. A certified HVAC technician will be able to detect any issues with your heating system and perform the necessary repairs so that the system is operating at peak performance. Many HVAC companies offer free annual inspections or discounted rates. The earlier you call to schedule your inspection, the better because technicians will get backed up as the cold weather approaches.

By following these 5 simple tips, you can maximize your comfort, safety and energy-savings during the winter season.