Those who have experienced a winter in Long Island are well aware that the weather can be extremely cold, wet and harsh. Your home needs to be equipped with the proper materials to withstand the upcoming months. As a result, many people in the area start to prepare for the season by considering certain aspects of their home and how they can make improvements to keep warm. Mike Serra, an exterior design expert at Alure Home Improvements, explained some of the top renovations that many homeowners request around this time.
When looking to optimize the heat in your home, the first place to look is your windows. While the walls of your home have layers of insulation and interior and exterior layers of materials to block out the cold, your windows just provide a glass barrier from the outside temperatures. Therefore, you need to make sure that they’re made of the best materials and that they’re properly installed.
“Your windows are only as good as their installation,” explained Serra. “It’s incredibly important to make sure they’re properly put in place and sealed, or you’re going to experience drafts and other damage to the comfort and look of your home.”
If you’re looking to change your windows, you can opt for either new construction or replacement windows, he noted. With the first option, you’ll be able to start completely fresh and create new spaces for windows, which ensures that everything is properly installed and sealed with the ideal materials. Their square shape allows them to perfectly line up with other windows and keep them in place as the house shifts over time.
With replacement windows, the glass must be altered to fit the current opening perfectly, and extra caution must be taken when sealing gaps and other crevices, explained Serra. Both options will give you better protection from the outdoor conditions, as new windows are designed to reflect heat. Additionally, krypton or argon gas is injected into the glass and serves as extra insulation that slows hot air from escaping or entering.
Siding and insulation
Your windows aren’t the only place that allows the cold air to creep in. Serra explained that the colder months are a popular time for homeowners to get concerned with the materials they use to insulate and protect their home from the outdoor conditions. If you’re reviewing siding options for your home, consider making a switch to vinyl now before the cold weather is in full force.
“Not only can it change the look and feel of the home and help with the aesthetics, but it can also help make your house breathable,” he said.
Whereas homes used to be packed with polyurethane insulation boards, they’re now insulated with a Styrofoam type of board that allows moisture to escape from the inside of the home. Serra explained that when the outside temperatures are drastically different from the indoors, it can trap condensation. With the right insulation, the moisture can escape and reduce the risk of mold and mildew buildup on the house’s interior. It can also help prevent dry rot from the wet conditions. However, the right materials are meaningless if they’re not properly administered.
“This is another instance where installation is key,” explained Serra. “If the area where the siding meets the foundation is exposed, it could allow the cold air to come into your home and create a cold draft. You need to hire professionals who know exactly how to seal and cover the entire area to protect your home.”
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