Local legends credit our Windy City moniker to all the hot air coming from politicians, but the Windy City is indeed windy—and cold to boot—which means weatherproofing is key during the upcoming winter months, particularly if you live in an older home.
“Most older homes can be drafty,” says Gillian Wiescher, Director of Communication at the Historic Chicago Bungalow Association. In fact, if you added up all the leaks, holes and gaps in a typical home’s envelope, it would be the equivalent of having a window open every day of the year, according to Energy Star.
But thankfully, with the right tips these homes can be made just as comfortable as new construction, said Wiescher. She gave us the scoop on how to keep your Chicago home warm all windy, winter long.
Energy Savers Program helps to retrofit Chicago homes, including adding insulation, air sealing and HVAC system improvements. For the past six years, over 10,000 rental apartment units in the Chicago region have been retrofitted, cutting energy costs by about 30 percent.
Retrofit Chicago, part of the City of Chicago’s Sustainable Chicago plan, offers free assessments and boasts that they’re a one-stop shop to get all of your retrofitting needs taken care of. This program aims to help increase the temperature of your home by 10 degrees and lower you energy costs by a few hundred dollars a year. You can also get an assessment of how much gas you use to heat your home each month of the year. Check out the site’s sample energy report, a breakdown of a home’s energy use, including natural gas and electricity.
According to climate data, Chicago receives the highest snowfall in December, January and February—so you still have some time to cozy up your abode. Follow our simple tips for weatherizing to feel the warmth and see potential monthly savings. Because even when we’re dreaming of a white Christmas, we’re always dreaming of a warm one.
Recommended by the Editors: