5 Tips for Keeping your House Warm in the Winter

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Home Remodeling Company in NJ

Keep the Curtains Open

During the day that is, and at night, close them up. Closing them at night will help to trap heat inside your home. During the day letting the sun in will significantly change the warmer feel in your house. Ensure that any drafts caused by windows are trapped with thick curtains.

Add Rugs to Bare Floors

Adding a rug to the floor not only keeps your house warmer, but it saves a few dollars in your pocket. According to the National Energy Foundation, it can add up to 10% less heat loss than a bare floor. Luckily, with websites featuring overstocked items, getting large area rugs for your home is affordable.

Reverse your Fans

In the winter, your fan blades need to turn in the opposite direction than they do in cooler months. Fan construction is really quite simple, with a simple screwdriver you can remove and turn the blades to tilt in the other direction. If you have a newer fan, fip the reverse switch on in the fan’s housing. In the winter you want your fans to bring the warm air (because heat rises) from the top of the room down.

Unblock the Heat Vents

Sometimes people design the layout of their furniture without considering the heating vents found along the floors and side panels of a room. If your furniture is too close to these vents you are preventing the heat to properly circulate. Check to make sure none of these vents are prevented from doing their job.

Insulate Everything

Ok, maybe not everything, but we can’t stress enough how important insulation is for a warm home. Even your water heaters could use a bit more insulation than they already have, this will help save on your home energy costs in the long run. Insulate anywhere where drafts, albeit small ones, are entering your home. Those tiny drafts can turn into heat escapes, and with just a bit of insulation you can prevent the heat from seething out of those cracks.

As a New Jersey Home Remodeling company, our team here at Trade Mark Design and Build knows cold weather. Our goal is make your home efficient, without sacrificing style.

Preparing Your Home For Winter

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NJ Home Remodeling Company

Unless this is your first year in New Jersey, you know what’s coming this winter. Once the fun of the holidays pass, the cold, snowy days of winter begin. As a local NJ home remodeling company, we know what you’re facing each year — and have prepared some tips to help you get ready.  Prepare now and you’ll be ready for cold winter storms this year:

Clear your Gutters

If you take the time to clear out all of the debris lurking in your gutters now, you’ll avoid trouble later. The leaves that didn’t end up on your lawn could clog the gutter; a single winter storm could cause significant roof damage if ice forms inside the gutters. Allowing water, slush and melting snow to freely flow to the ground ensures that your roof stays intact this winter

Care for Outdoor Plants

Cold weather brings dormancy for your outdoor landscape and garden, so take advantage of this time to prune any shrubs or trees on the property. Clearing away dead limbs and overgrowth can also prevent problems later this winter. A dead branch may be fine in the fall, but the sheer weight of snow and ice could topple any unhealthy trees around your home.

Prepare Pipes and Sprinklers

If you have an irrigation system or a well, preparing your pipes for winter – or turning off the pump entirely can keep your pipes from bursting this winter. Water expands when it freezes, so draining these systems can keep them safe from harm.

Get a Heating Checkup

Have an HVAC pro check out your home heating and furnace and make sure everything is ready to run. This will help you avoid an unexpectedly frosty home when the cold truly arrives and ensure that your system is operating at peak efficiency, too. If you have a fireplace and didn’t do routine maintenance in the fall, have it swept and cleaned by a pro to ensure it will operate safely this winter.

Do a Final Check for Drafts

Since about half of your home energy costs come from heating and cooling your home, checking for drafts before the coldest months arrive can cut your costs. If you can see light under an exterior doorway or feel a breeze around your windows, warm air could escape this winter. Weather-stripping or even caulking can help fill these gaps.

Stock up for Snow

The last two years have been particularly tough for snow, so storing an ice or snow melt product and the tools you need to make your home and driveway safe in bad weather now will save you an emergency trip to the store later. If you have hired a snow removal company or plow in the past, get in touch to make sure they are still in business and cover your area.

Preparing your home now for cold weather can help you enjoy the first (and second, and third) snowfalls this year – without worrying about your roof, pipes or grounds. There is still time to prepare your home for the cold weather months and to make sure you stay warm all season long.

Fall Home Checklist

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nj home remodeling

We see the signs of fall all around us. With home ownership comes seasonal maintenance. Know what to do to get your home prepared for cooler weather.

  • Check home safety devices. The batteries in smoke detectors and carbon monoxide devices should be replaced. Test all devices.
  • Winterize your air conditioning. A central air unit requires a cover on the outdoor unit. Window units should be removed or covered to prevent a blast of cold air.
  • Inspect your furnace. An HVAC professional can check for leaks, heating efficiency and change the filter, in addition to running a carbon monoxide check.
  • Prepare humidifiers. Humidifiers are often used when the air becomes too dry to be comfortable during cooler periods. Ensure that their contribution is clean and safe. Replace any old filters. Clean inner compartments with vinegar or another solution.
  • Clean out the gutters. Remove leaves, debris, and nests from gutters and look carefully for any leaks. You can either do this yourself or hire a service to handle it for you.
  • Check the siding. Look for signs of cracks or holes in the siding. Minor issues can be repaired yourself or you can contract a professional to help.
  • Look over your roof. Perform a visual inspection from the ground. You can use a pair of binoculars to see your roof in more detail or climb up on a ladder to get a good view. Be on the lookout for loose, cracked or missing shingles. Flat roofs might require the removal of built-up debris.
  • Review your water drainage systems. Remove any obstructions from downspouts and make sure that water is able to move away from the foundation of your home, your driveway or walkways. An additional extension may be necessary to direct the accumulated rainwater away from the home.
  • Inspect your sprinklers and irrigation system. Ensuring that the irrigation system is drained and checked is necessary in colder climates. A professional should perform repairs and mark those sprinkler heads close to a snow removal area.
  • Maintain the chimney and fireplace. For homeowners that enjoy a wood fireplace, the chimney needs to be cleaned and professionally inspected.
  • Change and repair windows and doors. Storm windows and doors should replace screens. All caulk and seals need to be inspected around doors and windows. While there, check for drafts as well. Minor caulking can be done yourself.

Ensure the integrity of your investment with seasonal maintenance.