Heating – 5 Effective Ways to Prepare for the Harsh Winter
The harsh Cleveland winter places the same kind of burden on your house as your body. The cold winds, temperature variations, snow accumulations take its toll on your Cleveland home. It can lead to a decline in performance and higher heating costs along with costly home repairs. Practice the following steps to prepare your home for the coming winter.
INSULATE THE ATTIC
Properly insulating your home is essential in securing a comfortable environment inside your home. Pay special attention to your attic. As a general rule, make sure you have at least twelve inches of insulation in your attic.
ENERGY EFFICIENT HEATING SYSTEM
As a Cleveland homeowner, you must be aware that around half of your utility bill comes from the cost of using your HVAC system. You can generate a lot of savings when you start using energy efficient heaters instead. Choose one that has a minimum of 95% AFUE or Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency rating. The AFUE rating is the rate of fuel that is being converted into heat. You can say that you have a furnace that is highly efficient if its AFUE rating is around or higher than 95%. Furnaces that gets the label of an ENERGY STAR comes with at least 95% AFUE rating.
Your home’s siding helps keep the cold air outside your home. Thus, a key to staying warm in the winter is installing the right type of siding. Take a look at the following four siding choices to see which one best fits your needs:
- BRICK – it is low maintenance, does not need coats of paint, resistant to rotting and insects, fireproof, highly energy efficient, and is a good boundary to muffle outside noise.
- METAL – it is resistant to dents, strongly resembles a wood’s appearance, and is also low maintenance.
- MANUFACTURED WOOD – highly resistant to the elements, resistant to damages caused by insects, and is pretty simple to install.
- FIBER CEMENT – it is low maintenance, resistant to the elements, resistant to damages caused by insects, and seldom requires repainting.
An ice dam is a usual yet detrimental problem that affect a lot of homes, especially the ones that experience harsh cold climates. Ice dams are capable of breaking your home’s gutters. It is the result of the melting snow that freezes again in your gutters and the edges of your roof. Also, it is capable of peeling off the paint of your Cleveland home’s exterior and destroy its shingles. You can avoid the formation of ice dams by regularly cleaning your gutters. Removing the pileup of debris in it will ensure that the runoff brought by winter will not clog your gutters and refreeze in there once the temperature starts to drop.
A significant source of discomfort and high utility bills during the cold winter months is the presence of the cold air gaining access inside your home. When you properly air-seal your Cleveland home, you have the potential of saving up to 20% of your home’s cooling and heating costs throughout the entire year. You’ll likely come upon unknown air leaks in your home’s crawl spaces and attics. But the most common areas in your home that you need to secure are right by your doors and windows. You can afford an additional barrier to safeguard you against the harsh elements by the installation of storm windows. You can also choose the style that best fits your taste. You must be wary of your home’s duct systems too. You lose up to 20% of the circulating air through your home’s duct system because of these annoying duct leaks.
Your qualified Cleveland HVAC contractor will help you with the rest of the preparations you need to make even before the winter season comes. You can surely enjoy the cold season minus the annoying headaches associated with your HVAC system when you prepared enough for it in advance.