Tips To Get Your House Ready For Winter | Wuensch Construction

Get Your House Ready For Winter

Get Your House Ready For Winter

That time of year in Minnesota is right around the corner again and here are some tips from Wuensch Construction base out of Excelsior Minnesota to get your house ready for the winter.

Check for Air Leaks

  1. Check around doors, windows, pipes, vents for leaks and drafts that let heat escape. Seal them up with caulking and weather-stripping.
  2. If your windows and doors leak really bad, consider replacing them with newer ones that are more efficient.
  3. Check your attic for holes that penetrate your ceiling like plumbing stacks, wiring runs that would let heat escape around them. Seal them up with can foam insulation.
  4. If you have masonry fireplace not in use, do not forget to close the damper.

Check Your Insulation

  1. Check your attic for adequate insulation and ventilation, if needed this can be the most cost-efficient way to cut home heating costs. If this problem is not resolved it could cause ice dams and do damage to interior walls and ceilings.
  2. Do not forget to check for attic ceiling penetrations.
  3. Weather strip and insulate your attic hatch or door to prevent heat lost escaping into your attic.

Check Your Furnace

  1. Have your furnace tuned up by a professional in the fall of the year to ensure it is in top working condition for the winter.
  2. If your furnace is old pre-1977, consider replacing it with a new 97 percent high-efficient furnace. This could cut your natural gas use nearly in half.
  3. Replace your heating air filter monthly this will make your furnace work less, use less energy, and run more efficient.
  4. If you still have an old dial thermostat consider replacing it with a new programmable thermostat. This could cut your heating bills from 20 percent.

Check Your Hot Water Heater

  1. If your hot water heater is older than 10 years consider replacing it with a new high efficient hot water heater. This will cut your heat costs.
  2. Turn your water heater down to about 120 degrees in the winter, this will feel a lot warmer than in the summer and save you money.
  3. Insulate your hot water pipes this will keep your hot water warmer longer.

Check Your Dryer Vent

  1. Clean out your dryer vent, this will make your dryer more efficient and save you money.

Check You’re Outside Waterspouts

1.   Unless your outside waterspouts are frost proof, make sure you drain them before       winter.

 

Jeff Wuensch

Homeowners 2013 Spring Home Repair Tips | Wuensch Construction

Homeowners Spring Home Repair Tips

Yes finally, the first day of  spring at Wuensch Construction and it might not seem like that now in Minnesota, but spring is in the air and temperatures will be warming up and soon will be time to think about spring home repairs. Your house might have had some damage from over the winter months, like ice damaging, snow removal or winter winds. Here are a few spring homeowners’ tips 

1)     Ceiling repairs caused from ice damming – If you have minor brown or yellow staining on your ceiling from ice damming from the winter months follow these steps. Paint over the stained area with a lacquer stain sealer (regular paint will show the stain through or bleed threw) then repaint the entire ceiling. Call a professional to come out to diagnose the problem of ice damming and water leaking.            

2)     Look for shingle repairs – during the winter months, shingles might have blown off during a winter storm or a shingle could have been broken off during snow removal near the eves so follow these steps. Wait for a nice sunny spring day when all your snow is off your roof. Take a ladder only if you can do so safely and go on top of your roof to trouble shoot any spots that may need repair. If find any spots replace the shingle. If you do not want to get up on your roof, call a professional to inspect and repair your roof.

3)     Windows – This is a good time to think about your old windows. If they are still a single pane windows think about replacing them with high efficient energy star windows before the air conditioning season starts to save money on your cooling bills.

4)     Doors – If you have storm doors make sure they are in working condition. Check, your weather-stripping on your exterior doors to see if they are in good condition and if not replace it.

5)     Caulking – Make sure all your windows, doors, siding and gaps are caulk to make a good sealed air barrier before this summer’s air conditioning season.

6)     Eliminate water in your basementkeeping the basement dry is very important to stop the growth of mold. If you have a sump pump system, inspect it to make sure everything is working fine. If you do not have a system make sure, your yard grade slopes drains away from the house. If you have gutters and downspouts make sure that they not clogged with leaves or debris sometimes they become clogged up over the winter months and then in the spring they over flow and water pours in next to the foundation.

7)     Service your furnace & air conditioner – Change your furnace filter before the cooling season starts it might have plug up with dust from the heating season. Check to make sure your outside coil on your condenser is free from dust and debris. If the coil is clogged, pressure spray it off with water using a water sprayer nozzle.

Jeff Wuensch

Autumn and Winter Home Winterization Tips

That time of the year is here again and cold is right around the corner. Here are some tips from Wuensch Construction based out of Excelsior to help save money or lives.

To choose which project to tackle first, it may help to try performing your own energy audit, or, if some of these improvements prove to be a little ambitious for you, hiring an expert like Wuensch Construction.

1)    Seal up the leaks. Caulk leaks around windows and doors. Look for places where you have pipes, vents or electrical conduits that go through the wall, ceiling or floor. Check the bathroom, underneath the kitchen sink, pipes inside a closet, etc. If you find a gap at the point where the pipe or vents goes through the wall, seal it up. Caulk works best on small gaps. Your hardware store should have products to close the larger gaps.

2)     Have a professional like Wuensch Construction come out and check your attic ventilation and insulation. Lack of insulation and ventilation will cause ice dams to form and do damage to the interior of your walls and ceiling.

3)     Consider replacing your old gas appliances with an ENERGY STAR® water heater or furnace. If your gas water heater is more than 12 years old, consider replacing it with a newer, more efficient model.

4)     Make sure all your gutters and down spouts are cleaned out and ready for spring.

5)     Clean out your dryer vent. This will make your dryer more efficient and save you money in gas bill.

6)     Have a professional heating company tune up your furnace which includes checking out your heat exchanger for cracks that could cause carbon monoxide leaks.

7)     Yes it’s easy to forget, but it’s important to replace or clean furnace filters once a month during the heating season. Dirty filters restrict airflow and increase energy demand.

8)     If you have an old dial thermostat have it changed out with a new programmable thermostat.

9)     If you have ceiling fans make sure you reverse the direction of the blade rotation so it will pull the heat down from the ceiling to the floor – cutting your heat costs down.

10) Unless your outside water spouts are frost proof, make sure you drain them before winter.

11) Turn your hot water heater down to about 120 degrees in the winter this will feel a lot warmer than in the summer and save you money.

12) If you have old drafty windows and doors have a professional like Wuensch Construction come out to give you an estimate on replacing them with energy star rated windows and doors.

13) By insulating your hot water pipes the water in them will stay warmer longer.