I live in the northeastern part of the country, and our priority is definitely the cold weather. I run my furnace for the majority of the year. By mid September, it is necessary to shut the windows, tighten up the house, and prepare for winter. Because of the severe cold, tremendous amount of snow and bitter windchill, it is important to prevent energy waste. Although my gas furnace is fairly energy efficient, it still costs a small fortune to run it for nine months of the year. And with outside temperatures dropping down to twenty below zero, the furnace is operating just about non stop. I do everything possible to cut down on the workload of the furnace and improve the comfort of my home. Since my home is extremely old, quite large, and features a lot of windows, it is a challenge to heat. There always seems to be drafts and cold spots. I have spent a great deal of time and effort to eliminate the leaks. Over the years, I’ve torn down every single plaster wall and ceiling, added insulation and put up brand new wallboard. I’ve replaced all of the old windows with thermal pane windows and carefully caulked around them. I’ve installed ceiling fans to combat the heat that tends to rise up and get trapped at the ceiling. I also take very good care of my furnace and am enrolled in an HVAC maintenance plan. Every fall, a licensed HVAC technician thoroughly inspects, cleans and tunes the components of my heating system. He makes sure that there is no debris accumulated in the duct system or inner workings which might block airflow. Any worn or broken parts are replaced, wires checked and moving parts lubricated. Because of this, the furnace works at peak efficiency, costs less to operate and resists malfunctions.