It’s no secret that a home without a winterization plan can make the colder seasons a lot harder than they need to be. Many of us live in climates that demand a shift in terms of how we live between the seasons.
When you’re in a rental home, winterization becomes more of a challenge because there are only so many physical changes you can make. A lot of extra cash is not something that many of us can spare for the winterization of a home that doesn’t belong to us, especially around the holidays. Yet there have to be certain steps taken to guarantee your family isn’t left paying through the nose in the cold throughout this winter.
Window Wraps, Weather Stripping, and Draft Snakes
Rather than replacing all of your windows to ultimately save yourself a little money on your heating bill, consider wrapping your windows with a home insulation package. They’re fairly inexpensive and can cut down on your lost heat by over 30%. That’s equal to a lot of household savings!
If home insulation packages don’t sound like the right option for you, you may want to consider weather stripping. You’ll need to know just how much of a gap exists in your windows or doors, though, because stripping is sold in pre-made size options.
Maybe you’ve never heard of a draft snake, but it’s a simple idea. Roll up a small blanket or towel and place it at the foot of your door. This can keep your from losing a great deal of heat due to under-door drafts. You can even buy covers for them so they match your decor.
Take a Shorter Shower and Wash in Cold Water
Many Americans spend a high percentage of their heating bill on heating water for dishes, showers and laundry. Take steps to conserve your hot water usage by turning down the heat on your hot water heater, cutting your showers short, washing some loads in cold water and avoiding running the tap during dishwashing. During the winter, we often have a tendency to run the water warmer than needed, so be conscious of the temperature.
Take Your Air Conditioning Unit Down
Many people neglect to remove their mounted air conditioning unit throughout the winter months. This is one way to literally burn money on heating your home. Do yourself a favor and put your air conditioner away for the winter season. Don’t give that toasty warm heat a way to escape! You can actually request that your landlord do this step if the air conditioner is too heavey for you, though it may be faster and easier to do it yourself.
Maintain your Hot Water Heater, Furnace, and Other Heating Devices
The more well-maintained your heating equipment is, the more efficient it will run. Even simple tasks like cleaning filters can make a huge difference, so make sure you landlord is doing this on a regular basis (necessary frequency of maintenance depends on the type of heating equipment in your unit or building). If you have a fireplace, this should be cleaned properly before you begin using it for the year. These maintanence tasks will also make your home safer. More accidents happen in winter than any other time of the year, in part due to fires, so make sure you have a great renters insurance plan. If you’ve invested in a comprehensive insurance plan, you can feel confident that no matter what happens to your home, your possessions and belongings are taken care of.