Our New Kitchen Porch

Our New Kitchen Porch

Finally took the photos and videos for this post and I can’t wait to share it because it changed our house in such a major way. Introducing… the area that we affectionately call our kitchen porch. Aka: the grillin’ spot with all the greenery.

If you followed along on Instagram Stories for the last few months, essentially this side porch always existed, but after we closed off doors number 7 and 8 from our bedroom which led out here (yes our bedroom had 8 exterior doors & still has 6 of them – more on that here), it was just a floating porch without any door leading to it. Here’s an old photo to show you what we essentially were starting with (this is after the exterior stairs came down from the upper deck, but before we painted the house, got new railings, etc, etc).

See that window on the porch in the photo above? That looks into the kitchen. And the double doors you see on the left side of the porch in the picture above are the old bedroom doors we terminated so we had the best spot for our bed & gained a nice big closet.

And here it is now. I can’t tell you how much more functional it makes things for our family. We can step outside and grill just a few steps from our kitchen (literally, the grill is maybe 5 steps from the kitchen counter inside) and we have a parking spot out here that we like to use because it’s closer to the house (so bringing in groceries just got a lot faster & easier, because we can bring them directly into the kitchen via a much shorter route).

We also have a nice safe fenced side yard over here, which we were excited about for Burger to get to enjoy. Now that he’s gone, that part of this setup hurts our hearts a little because he didn’t get to use it for very long, but he liked it a lot while he was here, and we think it’ll be handy when we have another dog (Burger is absolutely irreplaceable, but we’d love to rescue another dog and give them a loving home when we’re ready).

If you fast forward a little from the dark brown before shot (two photos up) and pause before going all the way to the after above, you’d be at this phase:

The photo above is after we terminated the doors from the bedroom side (we drywalled right over them and frosted the glass so it didn’t look too bad from the outside – but we knew it was only a temporary solution). We also painted the deck out here with porch & floor paint just to clean things up a little, but jumped at the chance to add the same Trex as the rest of the house during this phase of the update. We have Havana Gold trex upstairs on the deck up there and on the front porch as well as the side steps right near this deck that lead to the firepit, so finally getting the door permanently patched from the outside and redoing the decking with matching trex along with adding that door to access this porch right from the kitchen made it such an upgrade.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is kitchen-porch-vertical-shot-sunny-768x1024.jpg

If we had a magic wand we’d have made this deck a wee bit wider, but we’re right up against a lot’s setback so we have to embrace what we have, and all that means is that when we use the table we scoot it out a little for more sitting/eating space (the picture below was us taking this porch on its maiden we’re-eating-out-here voyage). See how the table is scooted out a bit more from the placement in the photo above? Also look how happy Burger was about the new kitchen porch. I’ll wait while you zoom in. That, my friends, is a real smile.

If you toggle back and forth between the photo above of us eating and the one below, you can see that when the table isn’t in use we just tuck it closer to the house. Also we hadn’t added the tin roofing yet in the photo above, but more on that in a second.

That Big Daddy Fig on the right in the photo below looks like he might graze our grocery bags, but we’ve both run through here with our arms loaded with like 7 bags (isn’t everyone’s toxic trait trying to carry all the grocery bags in one trip?) and not one time did that fig get in our personal space. We have a little video walk-about for you guys later in the post that’ll help you get more of a feel for what it’s like to walk around this side yard. So… get excited. Actually John made some interesting editing choices. So there’s that to look forward to.

The other upgrade we added to this area was a watertight metal ceiling over our heads. The upper deck is actually above this porch, and rain came right through those deck boards and onto this space before – but not anymore (we hired the same pro who added the door for us and waterproofed the siding where our bedroom door was to add this tin, and it was money very well spent).

Now we can grill and eat out here, rain or shine. When our friends come over with their kids, our group can easily balloon from 4 to 8 or even 10 – and thanks to our indoor table seating 7 in a pinch (3 fit on each long side and someone can pull up a chair on the end) and now adding this outdoor table that seats 4 more, we officially have seating for 11! Which we have tried out already (so far we adults like claiming the outdoor table by the grill while the inside one becomes one big kids table).

Speaking of the grill… one of our friends raved for so long about this grill that we had to buy one ourselves. Their glowing review, coupled with the online ratings for it and the fact that there is a little peekaboo window in the lid that allows you to see how everything is doing while you cook without opening it… well, we were sold. And so far we love it. We’ve made everything from burgers to chicken and even pizza on this thing. Delicious. Five stars. Would recommend.

Also, in all of the homes we’ve ever owned, including the beach house and duplex, we’ve never had a grill this close to the kitchen. Zero steps to go down! No walking around various rooms & patios carrying all the food and supplies! It is GREAT! We use it so much more this way. Feels extremely lucky to end up with this setup. Especially in a spot with nice enough year-round weather that we could grill outside 365 days a year.

The photo above is the new door we added that connects to our kitchen (the dishwasher is to my left as I stand here and take the photo) and look how close the grill is. Literally five steps. Maybe four if you’re John “LongLegs” Petersik. As you can see, I cannot get over this fact. I might meet you on the street and you’ll be like “I read your blog!” and I’ll be like “that’s so nice, did you hear that our grill is like five steps away from our kitchen?!”

If you look to the left beyond the kitchen deck you can see where we put the hanging tent we got the kids last year (you can read more about that here). They end up on that thing every time their friends come over or whenever we make s’mores (I’ve shared some videos of it swinging at night on Instagram Stories since it cracks me up that they always gravitate there like it’s magnetic).

If you pan a little more to the left, that’s where John hung his beloved paddleboard (it’s the same one he got years ago for Cape Charles, and it’s still going strong). They no longer sell exactly the same one, but this one is similar.

This is that little side area to the left of the kitchen porch when you step back and face it, and I want you guys to stare at those three trees behind the tent swing in this photo:

These are the same three trees! I know it’s a terrible photo (it’s actually a still shot from an old video I made in the rain) but isn’t it wild how much a fence can add to a formerly streetside zone? It gives us so many spaces to fully use (the fire pit area is on the other side of this fenced-in yard as well) and the weird floating parking space is now defined by the fence and landscaped, complete with crushed rock underneath it. It feels so much more legit, and oddly a lot bigger. Like each side of the fence feels like the size of the entire area before the fence went up. I have no idea why that happens, but my guess is that defined spaces can appear larger and more functional, versus amorphous ones without any visual boundaries.

Since we’re playing the Stare-At-Those-Trees game, look at the group of 3 big trees below. See how that one sort of elbows off to the left and swerves right again?

This is almost the same view now. I realized after I took this that I should have stepped about 5 more feet to the left to get exactly the same tree angle, but you get the gist. The space in the photo above just felt like… I don’t know… streetside nothingness…? And now it’s a legit fenced yard with stepping stones that lead to a parking spot, a fire pit area is off to the right, there’s a hanging swing to the left, and a brand spanking new kitchen porch at the other end of those stepping stones. And have I told you the grill is five steps from the kitchen?!

Behold, night time glowy deliciousness. I think this angle of the house wins most improved in my head. I mean look at her. She’s modern. She’s warm. She’s functional. She’s welcoming. She’s nestled in the trees.

Here she was before. In the words of Kevin McAllister: “Buzz, Your Girlfriend. Woof.” Don’t get me wrong, we both knew she was a STUNNER from the moment we laid eyes on this house, but it sat on the market for something like 265 days (in a location that’s under a five-minute walk to the Gulf of Mexico!). Might have been the fact that there wasn’t working plumbing and there were holes in the floor that also deterred people…

Why are we talking about anything other than these GLORIOUS FIDDLE LEAF FIGS THAT CAN LIVE OUTSIDE HERE?! I know, my mind is blown. We had one up on the deck for a full year and it was straight up happy-go-lucky about being outside. So we went all-in on a few more (I even planted one in the ground to see if it’ll grow up to be a huge tree someday- will keep you posted on how that goes).

Another best supporting character of this makeover: the string lights. I’ve said it once and I’ll say it again. Get yourself some string lights. Put them on a timer so they go on for a few hours each evening. They’ll draw everyone out like a moth to a flame. Literally, it works every time.

Oh and check out that little metal plant hanging bracket we got! It’s so fun to add something green up there in the corner out of the way of heads that gather ’round the table. Right now I have a fern there, but I might try my hand at some intensely drapey flowering annuals next spring. How awesome with a waterfall of hot pink flowers look?!

Here’s the view if you step back a few squares on those stepping stones (they’re these $6 ones from Lowe’s) which lead to our parking spot behind the gate.

I feel like we need to circle back to this table while we’re praising things I love out here because it’s so affordable and adds such warmth to this entire seating area. I sprayed it with two coats of this clear matte sealer based on some recommendations in the reviews, and so far it has been a champion. Drinks have already been spilled and morning dew happens even with a metal roof overhead and it looks like new so far.

This is the view from the gate that leads to our parking spot (the gate is open here – that’s the greeny-gray post where it latches closed on the right side of this picture):

You can sort of see where the stepping stones lead to the gate (which leads to our favorite parking spot) from this shot. Although that big bossy fig is kind of obscuring it. The fence jogs forward towards our house (that’s where our parking spot is) and the gate is on that run of fencing when it jogs towards the house.

This shot is really about the fig in the foreground, but I sense that you might not want to talk about plants as much as I do, so I’ll draw your attention to the rattan table behind the grill. That, my friends, is a streetside trash find. There are literal treasures just abandoned on the curb here, and my neighbor laughs at me about once a week because she catches me dragging something like this home.

Here’s a better shot of it from overhead. I think it used to have a piece of glass along the top and it broke so someone tossed it but I love it just the way it is. It’s currently holding a big shell full of other shells (naturally) and a potted plant (again, naturally) – but it could just as easily hold a tray with plates and serving stuff to have near the grill whenever that need pops up.

Oh and it’s hard to tell from this angle, but the steps that lead down to the fire pit area from our bedroom come off the house at an angle – so they would never have lined up with the stairs we added to the kitchen porch (which also called for fewer steps). So instead of running the new kitchen steps end to end and having them smash into the bedroom steps very awkwardly, we made them nice & wide (4.5 feet) but left room for planting beds on either side of them. Because, PLANTS. Need I say more?

This picture is just in here just because look at that grill gleam. Me-ow. And my fig is absolutely working the lens.

I might never get over the fact that the view of this side of the house from the kitchen used to be this…

… and now there is a big full-glass door that lets us gaze at this whole scene. The second they started cutting the hole for the door we were like OMG THE VIEW!!!

I mean, look at all that lush green stuff that we get to glance over and see while loading the dishwasher or prepping a meal.

And at night when the lights are glowing… it’s pretty freaking magical.

In summary: I love plants, the grill is five steps from the kitchen, and WE LOVE THIS FREAKING PORCH SO MUCH. John wants to write a big meaty post about what happened on the kitchen side of things (we made a few new updates in there too when this door was going in) so stay tuned for that.

Also I want to add up all the exterior square footage that our house has in decks/patios/porches, because I wouldn’t be surprised if it’s more than our 1400 interior square footage! If you include the stone patio around the pool (along with the front porch, upper deck, and our new kitchen side porch) it definitely is I think! And we’re so grateful to have it because we spend so much time outside. It truly helps our house live a lot bigger. When in doubt, make a bunch of come-hither zones outside, and add string lights and figs. All the figs.

Ok, as promised, here is a video of the entire space so you can walk around with us. It transitions (a few times) from day to night because John took some liberties while editing to spice things up. I love a man who could have just added a fade-wipe between day footage and night footage but decided to do some day-to-night-to-day transitions that are timed to that foot-tapping beat.

Video Tour

Note: You can also watch this video on YouTube.

And if you want to see what this fenced-in outdoor area looks like from above, you can actually catch a good long peek at it towards the end of this video that we recently shot of our family room & upstairs deck. You see the fire pit area as well as the stepping stones leading to the gate and the kitchen porch (although it was before we got our grill):

Note: You can also watch this video on YouTube.

Ok, that’s the end. Happy Monday, and may you all find something to love as much as I love plants and hitting the same joke about 4-5 times in the same post. Goodnight and good luck.

P.S. If you’ve somehow missed our Annual Gift Guide (you might even be messaging me to request that we do one at this very moment) – we did it and shared it last week! Here’s the link!

*This post contains affiliate links, so we may earn a small commission when you make a purchase through links on our site at no additional cost to you.

Hurricane Ida No Match for Louisiana Couple’s Metal Roof

Hurricane Ida No Match for Louisiana Couple’s Metal Roof

Ruby LeBlanc, seen observing the destruction from Hurricane Ida in Cut Off, Louisiana.
Left: Ruby LeBlanc, of Cut Off, Louisiana, observes Hurricane Ida’s damage in her neighborhood. Right: Ruby and David LeBlanc’s new metal roof saved their home from destruction.

When David and Ruby LeBlanc starred on a Today’s Homeowner television episode that featured an exterior renovation and metal re-roofing on their Cut Off, Louisiana home, they had no idea it would become the best insurance for Hurricane Ida, which would arrive shortly later.

The re-roofing project — and episode — was completed just weeks before Ida hit. The Category 4 storm lashed David and Ruby’s neighborhood for seven long hours, with torrential rain and wind gusts exceeding 180 miles per hour. Country-wide, Ida lasted from Aug. 26–Sept. 4, 2021.

David and Ruby evacuated before Ida hit, but they were on pins and needles waiting to find out how their home had fared. They soon learned that the destruction to the area was devastating. But their new metal roof remained virtually unscathed from Ida’s tremendous force. It saved their home.

“Our neighbor’s garage had exploded. Boats were flung up on the road. It took two hours to clear our driveway alone. All over our neighborhood, homes with tarpaper roofs suffered complete losses,” said David. “But our new metal roof performed wonderfully. There was no structural or wind damage and not a drop of water inside from the roof.

“If we hadn’t replaced our roof when we did, we probably would still be gutting the house all the way down to the framing.”

David and Ruby's asphalt shingle roof
David and Ruby’s old asphalt shingle roof had mismatched shingles from quick repairs over the years.

The Challenge

David and Ruby’s 70-year-old home, located on the Bayou, had been hit by hurricanes before. As a result, the old roof was a hodgepodge of repairs and tarpaper (asphalt) material that suffered leaks and damage.

So, when it was time to re-roof, the owners wanted a change. Metal was the ultimate choice, and as highlighted on the Today’s Homeowner episode, special attention was paid to quality installation for maximum wind-resistance performance and longevity.

“Going with a quality metal roof was more expensive initially, but when you look at how well it performed, the damage it saved our home from and the long-lasting reliability, it was absolutely worth it,” said David.

Workers stand on metal roof
Workers from Middle South Systems install a metal roof.

The Solution

David and Ruby selected Classic Metal Roofing’s Rustic Shingle steel in Shake Gray for their re-roofing project. Installers placed the new roof right over the old roof, using a quality underlayment and foam under each shingle, which lock into place to give the roof superior performance and hurricane resistance.

Installer Middle South Systems reinforced the new roof’s strength by securing each 2-foot shingle with three hurricane clips.

The homeowners were delighted to learn that the beautiful style of their new roof is matched only by its long-lasting reliability, as proven by standing up to Hurricane Ida.

For more information:

Representing the residential metal roofing industry in the United States and Canada, the Metal Roofing Alliance was formed to help educate consumers about the many benefits of metal roofing.

MRA’s main objective is to increase awareness of the beauty, durability and money-saving advantages of quality metal roofing among homeowners, as well as to provide support to the residential metal roofing industry.

For more information, visit MRA at www.metalroofing.com.

Gutter Guards: The DIY-Friendly Guide to Maintaining Rain Gutters

Gutter Guards: The DIY-Friendly Guide to Maintaining Rain Gutters

Leaves pile up in a GutterBrush leaf guard inserted in a gutter beside an asphalt shingle roof

Gutters and downspouts have an important job, directing rain water from the roof to the ground, so it never touches your home.

This prevents damage to the siding, basement flooding, and soil erosion near the foundation — and the costly repairs for those issues.

However, gutters catch more than rain water; they also collect leaves and debris that could block the drainage system, causing it to fail. 

Close-up view of GutterBrush leaf guard on a white background

About GutterBrush Leaf Guard

No one wants to constantly monitor their gutters for debris — and really, who has time for that? 

Fortunately, you don’t have to climb a ladder and keep a watchful eye over your gutters. At least, not when you have a special filter that does the heavy lifting! 

GutterBrush Leaf Guard is a cylindrical, bristled filter that you insert into your gutters. Each 3-foot section — which looks like a giant pipe cleaner — neatly fills the gutter, blocking any fallen leaves and debris. 

Installation is fast and easy, and the product is low maintenance, requiring only periodic checks for trapped contents.

Woman inserts a GutterBrush leaf guard into a gutter

How to Install GutterBrush

Always take the necessary precautions before climbing an extension or step ladder. For safety, have a buddy hold the ladder while you use it. 

Here’s how to install GutterBrush Leaf Guard: 

Close-up of a tape measure and a GutterBrush leaf guard inside a gutter

1. Measure and clean. Measure your home’s gutters so you’ll know how many leaf guards to order. Remember, each GutterBrush insert is 3 feet long. 

Then clean the gutters. Use a trowel to remove any leaves and debris; bag them for lawn debris or add them to the compost pile if you have one. Then spray each gutter with a garden hose and make sure water flows freely from the downspout. 

Man installs GutterBrush leaf guard in a gutter near an asphalt shingle roof

2. Slide a GutterBrush Leaf Guard into the gutters

Yes, just slide each one into position until you’ve filled the gutter — that’s all it takes! You need no tools or fasteners to install GutterBrush Leaf Guards.

Best of all, the system is affordable. Outfitting your gutters with GutterBrush costs thousands less than using most gutter covers and other screened systems. 

In fact, the average-size home can be protected for $200 to $400, based on needing 60 to 120 feet of GutterBrush.

Fallen leaves accumulating in a GutterBrush leaf guard that's inside a gutter

The Benefits of GutterBrush

In addition to filtering fallen objects, GutterBrush has a number of benefits, not the least of which is making gutter cleaning low maintenance. 

All gutters and gutter guards require maintenance, so be wary of any claims promising that you will “never clean your gutters again.” GutterBrush is the easiest leaf guard solution to install and maintain when needed. Just remove 3-foot sections, shake out any debris and slide them back in — no tools or fasteners needed. Gutter screens and covers have to be disassembled just to access the gutters and they are difficult to reinstall after cleaning.  

GutterBrush doesn’t just keep debris out of your home’s storm water drainage system; it also prevents birds, insects and rodents from nesting, causing system failure. 

Finally, during the wintertime, GutterBrush’s black bristles warm up in the sunlight, facilitating faster melting of snow and ice. 

The bottom line? Protecting your gutters with a simple full-time filter saves you time, money and energy!

Learn more at GutterBrush.com

Further Reading

DIY Tips for Installing Cement Backerboard

DIY Tips for Installing Cement Backerboard

Man laying floor tiles.

When tiling over plywood, you should always put down a layer of cement backer board first, which will provide the necessary support for the tile. Here are eight important steps to keep in mind when installing cement backer board:

  1. Check the plywood subfloor for any movement and squeaks. Use 2 inch drywall screws to fasten down any trouble spots, driving the screws through the plywood and into the floor joists below.
  2. Use a notched trowel to spread thin-set mortar over the plywood subfloor.
  3. Lay the cement backer board into the thin-mortar, making sure to overlap any seams in the plywood subfloor by at least 4 inches.
  4. Fasten the backer board using an impact driver and backer board screws; space the screws 4 inches apart around the perimeter of the backer board sheet and 8 inches apart across the center.
  5. Leave a one-eighth inch gap between the backer board sheets and stagger the sheets so that four corners don’t meet at a single intersection.
  6. Cover the seams between the backer board sheets with fiberglass mesh tape.
  7. Spread a thin layer of thin-set mortar over the taped joints.
  8. Once the mortared joints have cured, you can start setting the tile.
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Joe Truini is a seasoned contractor, accomplished author and hosts Simple Solutions on Today’s Homeowner TV. He also hits the airwaves every week alongside Danny Lipford as co-host for Today’s Homeowner Radio. Joe is a handy guy, who’s always on the lookout for ways to make the job of home improvement easier and more efficient.

Thermal Expansion and Why You Should Weatherize Your Home

Thermal Expansion and Why You Should Weatherize Your Home

Man installs weatherstripping in his stunning, gorgeous home
No home is completely energy-efficient — weatherize yours so it reaches maximum efficiency, regardless of the weather.

It’s been said that life has two certainties: death and taxes. But there’s actually a third thing: thermal expansion. 

Homeowners should understand this event, how it affects your home’s energy efficiency, and — above all — what to do about it. 

This gap in a a residential doorway needs caulking
Extreme temperature changes cause building materials to shift. This often results in cracks and gaps that allow outdoor air to seep inside. 

About Thermal Expansion 

As a solid, liquid or gas’ temperature increases, so does its volume. That, in a nutshell, is the definition of thermal expansion. 

But you don’t need to study thermodynamics to understand the basics. It’s simple: If your doors or windows get stuck, it’s because they got hot. 

The reverse happens, too: as a solid, liquid or gas’ temperature decreases, so does its volume. 

Such temperature swings and structural shifts often stress homes, leaving cracks and gaps.

Air, water and debris can then creep indoors, lowering the home’s energy efficiency, raising your energy bills, and diminishing your comfort. 

“Today’s Homeowner” co-host Chelsea Lipford Wolf removes old weatherstripping from a home
Preparing your home for severe weather — in this case, removing and replacing old, cracked weatherstripping — is one way to boost energy efficiency and protect your heating and cooling system. 

The Importance of Home Weatherization

Heating and cooling systems keep you comfortable, but thermal expansion undermines even the best climate control. 

Winter air that invades your home forces the heater to work harder — giving ‘forced air furnace’ a whole new meaning! And summer air that sneaks inside strains your air conditioner. 

Frequent stress on the heating and cooling system leads to equipment failure, more service calls, and shorter life expectancy for the unit. 

No home has maximum energy efficiency — not even new ones — because cracks and gaps are inevitable as the seasons change. So, it’s up to the homeowner to do something about it. 

That’s why weatherization — sealing your home with aftermarket products to protect it from extreme weather changes — is so important. 

Chelsea Lipford Wolf installs The Duck Brand's Max Window Roll On Kit
Duck® Brand has a number of products that make home weatherization an easy, affordable do-it-yourself project. The results could save you hundreds of dollars each year in energy bills.

Weatherizing Your Home: A Checklist

Home weatherization is an easy, affordable do-it-yourself project. And it’s your best defense against thermal expansion and contraction.

Best of all, the results can boost your home’s energy efficiency, slash utility bills, and increase your family’s comfort. 

Not sure where to begin? Follow along! 

Man installs Duck Brand door sweep in beautiful modern home with Persian rug
Duck® Brand’s Double Draft Seal blocks outside air coming from entering under your doors.

1. Block Drafts Under Doors

While inside, look under your entry doors — if the sun shines through, they need bottom seals. 

Duck® Brand’s Double Draft Seal is a foam insert that you cut to size and secure in place with patented straps. It’s removable, renter-friendly, and works for interior and exterior doors.

The seal won’t slide off or stick to doors, and it won’t damage them. It works with most flooring types, and the fabric cover is machine washable — so you can block drafts in style.  

Man installs Duck Brand window insulation kit
Finding cracks in your window frame is hard — but covering up those drafty windows with Duck® Brand’s Rolled Window Kits is easy.

2. Insulate Your Windows

During cold winter months, you may feel gusts through a window frame’s gaps. You can install a temporary barrier between the window and your home’s living space to block these drafts. 

Duck® Brand’s Rolled Window Kits are easy to apply and have everything you need. To prepare the surface, clean the window frame to remove excess dust. Then, apply double-sided tape to the window’s outside edge and remove the tape liner. 

Next, roll the film horizontally, from the window’s top-left edge, and cut it to size; roll the film vertically to the window’s bottom edge, and press it firmly onto the tape. 

Finally, shrink the film with a hairdryer to remove wrinkles, and cut any excess film with scissors. 

Weatherstripping product from Duck Brand
Duck® Brand’s Weatherstrip Seals are self-adhesive, affordable and keep your family comfortable during cold and hot weather.  

3. Apply Weatherstripping

Small cracks and gaps around windows and doors lead to year-round energy losses. You can’t stop thermal expansion, but you can apply weatherstripping to prevent its inevitable impact on your home. 

Duck® Brand Weatherstrip Seals are made of self-adhesive foam for an easy install. Just remove dirt and dust from the project area, measure the space, cut the product to size, remove the protective backing, and press the seal into place. 

For added assurance, especially in colder climates, consider Duck® Brand Heavy-Duty Weatherstrip Seals. They’re guaranteed to not crack in temperatures as low as -40 degrees Fahrenheit. 

Remember: Weatherstripping works year-round, not just to prevent drafts, but also to block dust, pollen and insects from invading your home. 

Man caulking around windows to weatherize his home
Seal your home’s ‘envelope’ — or exterior — with caulk to prevent outdoor elements like air, dust and water from sneaking indoors. (DepositPhotos)

Next Steps 

Congratulations! You’ve taken the first — and best — steps toward protecting your home from thermal expansion’s inevitable results, and boosting energy efficiency. 

It’s also a good idea to add more attic insulation, replace your air filter, caulk exterior cracks, and get a professional heating and cooling system inspection. Read ‘5 Reasons Your House is Cold’ to learn more about that! 

And check out Weather.DuckBrand.com for more home weatherization products.