The weather is cooling off, even in southern California. While the process is slow where I live, the difference can be felt.
It’s a good time to think about how well your home is insulated. A few quick, affordable steps can help to cut your winter heating bill.
1. Install weatherstripping as needed.
I’ve been after my husband on this one for the front door for a while. The gap in some spots is visible. We don’t use the heater much in winter, but it would be nice to block that draft, as well as some of the bugs that can too easily come in.
Actually, the door has some already, but the landlord cut it too short on both sides. The gap is visible. This kind of work is pretty typical in the place we’re renting. Nice people, but not champion do-it-yourselfers, despite their best efforts.
A small opening like that can allow quite a bit of heat to escape. There’s a good tutorial on How Stuff Works on installing weatherstripping.
2. Insulate your hot water heater.
A hot water heater cover is affordable and may well pay for itself within one year.
3. Cover your windows.
In my area it works to let the sun shine into the windows in the morning to warm things up. But every other window is kept covered.
If things are particularly cold, get some heavy curtains or hang blankets over the windows. These create an insulating layer that can help to keep the cold out.
4. Add more insulation to the attic.
This costs a bit more, but if your insulation is too thin you’re wasting a lot of heat. Spending the money and time to get more insulation can make a difference.