Chip’s Tips to Winterize Your Home

As seen on The Weather Channel – November 13, 2021

Winter is just around the corner…so the folks over at The Weather Channel reached out to Chip for some tips to prep your home for the colder weather.

Q: What’s one of the simplest way to keep the cold weather out this winter?

A: Winterize your windows! It’s really a simple five step process:

  1. Caulk and seal windows for winter to create a barrier between the window frame and exterior siding. Focus on the lower corners of windows and under joints between window combinations.
  2. Apply new weatherstripping. Quality weatherstripping should be tight, covering the space between the window sash and frame to prevent air and water leaks.
  3. Inspect window locks and latches. Windows that don’t close properly will let cold air and moisture in. Lock and unlock each window to ensure everything is working properly.
  4. Hang Thermal Curtains. Thermal curtains are heavy lined with foam to provide additional insulation to keep the cold out. Bonus: they also help reduce noise!
  5. Replace windows that have too much damage or wear.

Chip’s picks for window winterization:

*Housekeeping Note: The products featured below are compensated placements and this post may contain affiliate links. We may earn a small commission when you make a purchase through one of our links at no additional cost to you. We only recommend products we have personally used and while some of the pics and stats may come from the manufacturer, all of the tips and opinions are our own

Without a doubt DAP’s® AMP™ (Advanced Modified Polymer) Sealants are the best for caulking and sealing your windows! These are advanced hybrid sealants that are designed to outperform silicone and provide maximum performance for every project. AMP Sealants provide a 100% weatherproof and waterproof seal with the ability to be applied on wet and damp surfaces…and feature a fast and efficient 30 minute paint and rain/water ready times. AMP sealants can be applied in extreme temperatures (0-140 degrees F), prevent mold and mildew growth and are backed by a lifetime guarantee, rivaling any other high-performance product in the market today.

AMP is available in a 100% weatherproof and waterproof Window & Door sealant and a 100% waterproof Kitchen & Bath sealant.

If you have windows with thermal seals broken, glazing separated from the sash, or any rot…it’s time to replace. Chip’s top pick for replacement windows this season is aluminum clad windows from Pella. Chip is especially drawn to the Pella® Reserve™ – Contemporary Wood Casement Windows that have a sleek modern design with the exceptional durability of aluminum-clad wood windows.

Q: Do you have any tips to prevent winter weather from damaging your home?

A: Yes, the best way to protect your home from damage is to remove the potential hazards before they can do damage! Now is the critical time to trim back overhanging tree branches or shrubbery that is encroaching on your home. I recommend giving your home some breathing room, approximately 3 feet of clearance around the perimeter. Not only will this prevent dead limbs from falling onto your roof or into your windows, but keeping the perimeter clear limits the access pests may use to enter your home while they are looking for a warmer place to winter!

Keeping your gutters clear is also another critical pre-winter maintenance must do! Clogged gutters can cause damage to your roof and provide rodents and other pests with an attractive winter hide-a-way.

Chip’s picks for preventing winter damage:

Chip is a big fan of the entire RYOBI 18V ONE+ System which has over 225 different products, but this winter he is specifically adding the 8″ Chainsaw and the 22″ Hedge Trimmer to the top of his list.

The 8″ Chainsaw is ideal for pruning and light limbing, removing those branches that may hang near gutters your need to clear prior to winter. It’s also super lightweight with a 4AH Battery…and Maintenance Free! That’s right…this chainsaw doesn’t require any bar and chain oil to operate. The 22″ Hedge Trimmer has a 3/4″ cut capacity and the HedgeSweep debris remover clears the clippings as you trim!

Whether it’s to clear those gutter or reach overhanging tree limbs, if you’re climbing a ladder outdoors, it’s imperative you use a high quality ladder with safety in mind! The Leveler series from Little Giant Ladder Systems adjusts to uneven ground with ratchet leg levers you can adjust in seconds. The retractable legs can provide more than 7″ of leveling adjustment.

The Leveler also features patented rapid locks, palm buttons, and sturdy, non-slip feet for safe and efficient usage.

Q: With energy costs on the rise and colder weather turning up the thermostats, is there anything we can do now to improve efficiency or reduce demand?

A: The two most important items to check to keep your heating bills as low as possible this winter are: 1. Your HVAC Air Filter and 2. Your Insulation. When your filter is clogged your air handler has to work harder to keep the air circulating. Ensuring your air filter is changed out timely might be the easiest thing you can do to keep your home healthy and energy bills down. Proper insulation is a simple and straight forward solution to prevent heat loss. Most homes are under insulated. In the attic aim for a depth of 16 inches, but check with local code for the recommended R-value or in general aim for R60.

Chip’s picks for reducing winter energy costs:

A great solution to ensure you are changing your air filter when you need to, is to subscribe to an automatic delivery program of high quality filters. The beauty of the Atomic Filters subscription is that you enter your info once, find the filter you need, and then you automatically save time and money!

Don’t wait until January to order!! Most folks think to change filters in January for the new year, but with supply chain issues backing up…go ahead and order now. Get your Atomic Filters subscription going and forget until your next filter shows up on your doorstep.

Comfortbatt® from Rockwool is such a smart choice. First, it provides great thermal protection to improve comfort and safety in your home and help keep energy costs down. It’s made from ROCK so it repels water to help prevent the growth of mold and mildew. That also means it’s also noncombustible resisting fire up to 2,150˚F. It won’t contribute to the development of flames or smoke in the event of a fire. Comfortbatt® can be used to either top-up or replace old attic insulation. There are many R-value options available, from R13 to R38 so there is something for everyone regardless of your climate zone.

Comfortbatt® insulation will help improve energy efficiency as soon as it’s in place and provide savings over the lifetime of your home.

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