Picture of a house during winter.

Energy costs are on the rise. Sanctions against Russia and OPEC’s decision to decrease oil supply mean that global energy prices have spiked since last winter. European shortfalls in natural gas are bidding up global prices. Your electricity provider is seeing higher prices, and thus so are you.

Weatherization is energy efficiency steps around the home that help decrease your heating and cooling costs. There is no one silver bullet to keeping energy costs down, but there are many things to check that each help a bit.

Door seals (weatherstripping along the sides and top, a door sweep along the bottom) prevent unwanted airflow in and out of the home. If you can see daylight anywhere around your exterior doors, know that this door is not properly sealed. New weatherstripping, and a sweep, are required on that door. As a general rule, given there are multiple styles of each, simply go with a ‘new’ version of whatever style is currently on your door.

During the summer months, I recommend that you close both the blinds and curtains in southern and western-facing windows. The sun will heat those rooms up, and your air conditioning will run longer to cool them down. During the winter months, this works in reverse. Use the rays of the sun to warm the room by opening the blinds and curtains and save on heating costs.

The home can get warm, and the air stagnant, during winter daytimes when outside temperatures rise and the sun is coming through the windows. If the outside temperatures are cooler than the inside temps you can get free ‘cool air’ by simply opening up your windows and doors.

Ask any HVAC person what is the ONE single thing you can do to extend the life of your system and changing filters regularly will be their response. Filters clog with particulates over time and the system must work harder to move air through a clogged filter. Quarterly changes are recommended.

Insulated glass panels (multi-pane windows) are another way to improve energy efficiency. Fogged windows indicate broken seals and the window has lost its insulating value. Replacing fogged windows will both improve the look of your home and improve energy efficiency.

Your thermostat setting has a significant impact on energy costs. We all like to be cool during hot months, and warm during cold months, but keeping the home a bit cooler when running the heat, and a bit warmer when running the air conditioning will really help with your power bill.

Prepare now to save this winter as mother nature cools things down and we switch from cooling to heating our homes. Our friends and family in northern states might laugh at the idea of ‘Winter’ in Florida, as this is where they come to lose their winter blues. Winter is winter, wherever you are from, those few coldest months of the year. We will not have to shovel snow, but we will see our breath during the morning. Heat will be required to take the chill off the home, and we need to do that as efficiently as possible.

If you know you have weatherization needs but do not have the time or desire to do them yourself, please give Mr. Handyman a call. We have experience with a wide range of home maintenance and repair tasks, including weatherization tasks. We also do home improvements and light remodeling. Our office staff are available during business hours to answer questions and schedule appointments. Our in-home staff gets great customer feedback. We also stand behind their work with our Done Right Promise. ® Few offer all of this.

Professional, safe, reliable, and convenient, Mr. Handyman is redefining home improvement!