Extreme winter weather calls for home heating tips

Extreme winter weather calls for home heating tips

SPOKANE, Wash. - The big chill has many of you looking for easy and inexpensive ways to keep your home warm, and Kim Kreber, SNAP's Energy Conservation Coordinator, has tips to help you cut down on your energy bill.

Kreber said your first stop is in the basement, where you can check the ducting with the Charmin test. By holding toilet paper up to your ducts you can check for drafts. If you see the toilet paper move, you have leaks.

The next stop is the front door.

"Have someone go inside with a flash light and they are actually going to shine the light around the door," Kreber said.

If light comes through, put weather striping around the door.

Next, start checking your walls.

"You can go around and just feel, especially around the baseboards," Kreber said.

When you feel cold coming in, you have a crack or leak.

Kreber said if you feel a leak in your walls you can apply caulk to seal it.

Professionals at the non-profit Sustainable Works are also available if you need more help. They say their goal is to help homeowners lower their utility bills.

Their "Save Energy Today" assessment is just $95.

"They look at everything from the attic down to the basement," Tess Jilot of Sustainable Works said.

They look at windows, doors and appliances. They also use an infrared camera to look at your walls.

"[If] there is a lot of blue and purple colors, that could mean there was not a lot of insulation in the wall," Jilot said. "We would add some."

At the end of your home assessment, they will give you an energy report card, which includes other things you can do around your home to save money, but the biggest thing is to seal it up and keep the cold out.