Now that the leaves have all fallen and we are gearing up for the holidays, there is that distinctive chill in the Vancouver air signaling the beginning of the winter season. Before the temperatures drop too much or the snow begins to fly, now is the perfect time to get your home ready for the winter. As the premier realtor for UBC homes I would like to offer you the following tips that will keep your home warm and comfortable this winter.
Check that Thermostat
Your home’s thermostat is the control panel responsible for heating your home. If you do not have a programmable thermostat, I suggest that you get one today. This often-overlooked feature could help save you up to 3% on your heating bills this year. If used properly, it will pay for itself over the course of this winter.
Here’s the deal:
By programming your thermostat, you control what rooms are heated in your home and when they are heated – no more forgetting to turn the heat down at night or having to crank the thermostat when you get home from work while sitting in a cold house for the next 30 minutes.
Stop those Drafts
Drafts can account for up to 30% increase in energy use over the winter season and can give false readings to your thermostat, making your furnace run overtime. Here are some tips on how to stop those drafts and keep the heat in your home, where it belongs:
- Weather stripping can help to eliminate drafts around windows. Make sure to use weather stripping thick enough that it provides an adequate seal.
- If your window is in an out of the way place, consider using a plastic film that will seal out drafts and prevent heat from escaping.
- Use a door sweep to stop drafts that will come in under the doors. Make sure that the door sweep covers any gaps between the door and the door jam and is thick enough to provide a proper seal.
Another cost effective way of stopping drafts that may be along foundations or doors is to simply roll up a towel and set it against the draft. This will stop cold air from leaking in and prevent excess energy consumption.
Maintain your Furnace
Another key piece of winter maintenance for your home is your furnace. It is so important that you keep your furnace running smoothly and properly maintained. You should replace or at least look at your furnace filter annually. A clean filter will allow for better air flow and less energy consumption.
I also suggest that you get your furnace serviced before winter each year to keep it running efficiently and effectively. The last thing you want is a broken furnace on the coldest days of the year.
If you are looking at replacing your furnace, replace it with an energy smart unit. Not only will this save you money in your heating bills, energy smart furnaces also offer tax break incentives.
By following these winter tips, you should be able to enjoy this beautiful season in Vancouver from a warm and comfy home. If you would like some other tips on how to winterize your home or to see some of the exciting new properties that are available in the UBC area, please contact me today.