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With temperatures dropping and Old Man Winter beginning to make his appearance, GDS’ Building Energy Services team wants to remind you that there are simple, actionable steps that you can take to prepare your home for a comfortable and more efficient winter season.

 

Below are a few of the many ways you can prepare for the winter months:

  • Make sure your heating system is operating efficiently and reliably by scheduling a service or tune-up; including any chimneys used for fireplaces or woodstoves.
  • Inspect door and window operation for any faults . Do exterior doors (including those that access basements and attics) have proper weather stripping to create an airtight seal and avoid drafts? Are windows able to be latched effectively to stop unwanted condensation?
  • Insulating hot water pipes is a cheap and easy way to reduce the potential of freezing while generating some energy savings by slowing heat loss from the pipes to cold spaces where they may be located.
  • Reverse ceiling fans in large rooms or those with high ceilings to redirect warm, buoyant air back down from the ceiling.
  • Take advantage of the sun by opening window blinds or drapes during hours when the sun is shining through windows to capture the heat from solar gain but don’t forget to close them up at night when heat wants to escape to the cold window panes.
  •  Adjusting the thermostat or purchasing a smart thermostat can provide energy savings but don’t over do it. Drastically reducing the thermostat temperature cools not only the air but also all the surfaces of your home, causing the heating system to work harder to return the home to a comfortable temperature.
  • LED (light-emitting diodes) technology has taken over the lighting market, and this include holiday decorations. Get rid of Grandma’s old lights and upgrade to more energy efficient and safer Holiday light decorations.
  • Finally, check your utility providers (electric and gas) websites for other energy saving tips and possible programs that may incentivize or subsidize installed efficiency measures.