NEW YORK(CBSNewYork) — The frigid temperatures are sticking around for a while, but there are Still things you can do to make your house warmer and lower your energy bills.
As CBS2’s Carolyn Gusoff explained, you may be surprised where drafty air is coming in from. Even places like outlets and light switches can let cold air in.
“If you add up every little hole from every single outlet, and every little switch in the house it becomes a significant amount,” United Way of Long Island’s Stephen Muzyka explained.
United Way of Long Island has a home simulator that allows users to go on the hunt for hidden leaks.
Floor moldings let cold air pour in.
“When most people say they’re cold, it’s drafty, the reason is they have too many leaks coming from the basement through their moldings,” Muzyka said.
They need to be caulked, along with holes for phones and cable lines.
“Every penetration in the basement should be airsealed,” Muzyka added.
Seal up around gas lines and vents. Holes in the floor for radiator pipes are a source of heat loss.
“Nobody realizes that, and every single radiator in your house has two pipes attached to it in every room you will have a major leak,” he explained.
Cold air also pours through the attic hatch. Most people use just a thin piece of plywood. What you should use is thick insulation attached to sheetrock, then seal the edges.
Weatherization experts say when they seal hidden leaks in drafty homes, customers’ comfort levels go from zero to 100.
“These fixes costs less than what you waste on energy bills. Hidden leaks can cost as much as having a half dozen windows open year round,” Femi Ayodele, United Way of Long Island, explained.
If you have icicles hanging off your gutters that’s usually a sign that your attic is not properly insulated.
United Way of Long Island trains young people and veterans in home building and weatherization skills. They in turn help low and moderate income families find cost effective ways to make their homes more comfortable.