The dark, cold days of winter are creeping up on us. In my part of the world, we’ve had a never-ending fall, with plenty of gorgeous days, but it’s time to be realistic. Winter will arrive at our door soon, and when it does, it helps to be ready. Whether your rent your home, or if you own it, here are some things that should be attended to, to keep your bills down, and make sure your home is ready for winter. Install window film to save energy costs
Many of the tasks described here are relatively easy to complete on your own, with minimal tools, and a bit of elbow grease. If any project turns into a bigger one, or if you find you don’t have all the tools and equipment to complete a certain job, find tools for rent on

Rent ladders, scaffolds, window cleaning equipment, and any other tools you may need to complete these tasks.

Heat loss is the biggest issue that winter presents. Now that the evenings are getting colder, the drafts around windows and doors are really becoming apparent. If replacing your windows is not an option, due to budget, or if you are renting your home, then the easiest solution is to apply a window film. You can get the cheap (and rather tacky, but still functional) form of window film, that is basically plastic, that you secure around your windows with adhesive, and a blow dryer. Or there are more professional, and streamlined window films that lower your energy costs, and keep your home feeling warmer, from companies such as, Energy Film. Make sure you have very clean windows if you install a energy saving window film yourself.

Add new weatherstripping around your doors, to minimize the heat loss in this area.

If your older home has storm windows, make sure to get them into place.

Take out any window mounted air conditioning units, and store them for the winter. If you can’t remove your air conditioner, then seal around it as much as possible.

The winter months not only plunge us into chilling temperatures, but darkness as well. Electricity bills start to add up as we have more lights on, and consume more power. To cut down your power consumption during these dark months install motion sensors for your outdoor lights, if you’re in a habit of forgetting them on. Put Christmas lights, and outdoor extension cords used for plugging? in your car, on a timer, to reduce how long these things are on.

A programmable thermostat can help you manage your heating bills by turning your heat down during the night, and for times when you are at work, or not home.

It’s a good idea to have your furnace cleaned and serviced, as well as your fireplace if you have one. Rent a chimney sweep, and duct cleaning equipment if you’re up for taking on this task yourself. Keep your vital home heating equipment safe, and in good repair to prevent fires, and carbon monoxide poisoning.

Speaking of which, make sure to test all your smoke detectors and CO2 detectors, to make sure they are in good working order to keep you and your family safe.

Follow these few tips for a more safe, and more energy efficient home this winter.