Here are just a few steps that may help you lower your utility bills and protect your biggest investment.

•           Reverse Your Ceiling Fans - If your ceiling fan has a reverse switch, use it to run the fan's blades in a clockwise direction after you turn on your heat. The fan will produce an updraft and push down into the room heated air from the ceiling.

•           Caulk Around Doors and Windows Plus Add Weatherstripping - Silicone caulk is best for exterior use because it won’t shrink and it’s impervious to the elements. Weatherstripping can help seal air leaks in areas of your home, such as doors, windows and attic access points.

•           Clean the Gutters and Check Downspouts - If your gutters are full of leaves, twigs, etc., water can back up against the house and damage roofing, siding and wood trim. Add extensions to downspouts so that water runs at least 3 to 4 feet away from the foundation.

•           Chimney Sweep - Make sure your fireplace (or any heating appliance burning gas, oil, wood or coal), chimney and vents are clean and in good repair. That will prevent chimney fires and prevent carbon monoxide from creeping into your home.

•           Check Snow Supplies and Equipment - Make sure you have snow shovels and a roof rake on hand. Stock your ice melting compound to melt ice on walkways. Have your snow blower and generator serviced before you need it.

Welcome to the winter season!