“Winter is the season in which people try to keep the house as warm as it was in the summer when they complained about the heat.”
I have often wondered, “A home with an interior temperature of 74 degrees can feel vastly different to those living there depending on the season. Why?”
As crazy as it may seem, think about it. During the summer, the U.S. Dept. of Energy recommends setting your thermostat at 78 degrees and during the winter 68 degrees. Interestingly, in the summertime a house temperature of 74 degrees may feel a little too chilly. On the other hand, the very same house – also at 74 degrees – may feel uncomfortably warm during the winter months. While pondering this curious matter, autumn draws to a close. The weather is cooler and rains are coming in a more frequent and predictable pattern.
Southern California’s climate and potentially mild weather greatly diminishes the need for man-made temperature control. While shoveling snow and dealing with frozen pipes are rarely a concern where we live, preparing our home for winter should never be overlooked. In addition, conserving energy, saving money and maintaining personal comfort are always wise endeavors. If you choose to do so, read on to gather ideas and to be ready for inclement weather.
• Clean Gutters. Leaf-filled gutters become blocked and overflow. Direct downspouts carry water away, not toward, your home’s foundation.
• Check Roof. Missing or loose shingles may cause a roof to leak.
• Check Heating System. Change the heating system filter and do so throughout the winter season. Clean filters improve airflow and efficiency and help prevent fires.
• Repair and vacuum heating ducts. Check ductwork for pinched areas or gaps, which can prevent the flow of heated air. Vacuum ducts every few years to remove pet hair, dust and other debris that may cause respiratory problems and reduce efficiency.
• Inspect the Chimney. Have a professional chimney sweep clear debris and soot. There is a deadline – Christmas Eve!
For any of these chores, call a professional if needed. There is no time for a trip to the ER during the holidays!
If all goes as planned, it should be raining as the CV Weekly is being delivered. Hopefully Robin remembered to cover the paper as up to three inches of rain are predicted for the foothills! Tomorrow looks to be dry, but on Saturday there is a slight chance for showers. According to the NWS, “The storm door will open up again either Wednesday or Thursday.”
Most importantly, the Montrose Christmas Parade will go forth under clear skies.
Sue Kilpatrick is a Crescenta Valley resident and Official Skywarn Spotter for the National Weather Service. Reach her at email@example.com.