Cold weather is here, and your Chicago home utility bill may be bearing the brunt of the weather.  To get started, you may want to check out how efficient your home is now. There are a few simple things to reduce the amount of money you have to pay out this winter.

Your windows are the most common place that your home is vulnerable to the elements.  Here are a few things you can do to minimize energy loss around your windows:

Find The Source Of The Leak

In order to know where repairs need to be made, you have to find the source of the leak.  One way is to feel for drafts along all the seams of the windows.  If the leak is too small to be felt by your hands, you can hold a candle near each window.  When the flame changes, you’ve found the leak.

Seal the Windows

You can use silicone caulking or weatherstripping to seal the seams of the window.  Both can be found in most Chicago home improvement stores.  You’ll need to buy a caulking gun to apply the silicone.

To use a caulking gun, you simply insert the caulk into the gun.  Slice off the tip of the caulking tube, and gently squeeze the handle to push the caulk out.  Maintain an even pressure as you apply the silicone caulking.  This way, you’ll get a thin even line of caulking.

If you have old, wood windows you may need to seal the window off completely with plastic.  Fortunately, you can buy plastic sheeting with double-sided tape already attached from any hardware store.  To apply the plastic to your windows:

  • Clean the windows with warm soapy water.
  • Measure the window and pre-cut the plastic.
  • Remove the non-stick backing off the tape.  Attach it along one corner of the window. Continue applying it to the rest of the window.
  • Use a blow-dryer to shrink any wrinkles in the plastic.

By insulating your Chicago home against the cold weather, you can avoid spending a lot of money on your utilities this winter.

The more weather proofing you do early in the season, the more you’ll enjoy a warmer, more comfortable and more cost efficient home throughout the upcoming winter months.

More questions? Feel free to email me at Doug@LincolnParkLiving.com and will do what I can to help!