Five Things You Need to Know Today is a Patch column that provides readers with essential, daily information at a glance. Check back later for more, and let us know what you think of the feature in the comments section.
1. Silly old monsters storytime
Twice as nice Storytime will be held Norton Public Library 10:15 and 11:15 a.m. This program brings back-to-back identical storytimes. If you miss the first, you get a second chance to participate. Today’s theme is silly old monsters. Drop-in for stories, songs and fun.
2. Career fair
A career fair will be held 1 to 4 p.m. at UMass Lowell, which is open to Wheaton College students. Meet with over 145 employers from many professional fields to discuss opportunities for internships, co-ops, part-time, full-time jobs or networking. For more information visit the event website.
3. Free caregiver strategies program
Community VNA, 10 Emory St., Attleboro, will hold a free community education program 6 to 7:30 p.m. This workshop is designed for those who may find themselves in new roles as caregivers for their loved ones, spouse, life partner or aging parents. Some of the key issues to be covered include: understanding role transitions and why it’s so hard; how to maintain respect while providing what’s “best”; dealing with your own emotions and finding support from a group, friends, family or counselor for the challenge of caregiving. This program is free and open to the public. Pre-registration is required; email email@example.com or call 774-203-1311. For more information visit www.communityvna.com.
4. Tips to keep warm while saving money this winter
National Grid offers the following steps you can take to not only make sure your home stays warm, but also to help cut down on heating costs this winter:
- Lower your thermostat to 68 degrees. In the winter, set the thermostat between 65 and 70 degrees during the day and to 58 degrees at night or when away from home for several hours. If you have a heat pump, make sure to slowly increase the temperature to avoid running the emergency heat.
- Seal air leaks. Seal all holes from pipes and wires that enter/exit the living space. This includes entrances, pull-downs and attic stair openings, light fixtures, pipes and wires. Attic entryways should be weather stripped and insulated.
- Seal off fireplaces. Never use a fireplace as a heat source for your home. Even as a supplemental heat source, the cold air introduced to a warm home through an open flue isn't as efficient as sealing off a fireplace and using the primary source of heat. For natural gas fireplaces, turn off the pilot light when not in use.
- Seal duct work. This is the number one way to conserve energy. Make sure that all ductwork is sealed at joints and intersections with duct sealer or silicone caulk.
Otherwise, supply ductwork can leak heated air into the attic or crawl space, and outside air can be drawn into the return ductwork, increasing costs and reducing comfort dramatically.
- Lower water heater to 120-125 degrees. Many water heaters are automatically set at 140 degrees. Lowering the temperature on your water heater to between 120 and 125 degrees will reduce the amount of fuel needed to heat the water.
- Change furnace filters every month. This is the number one reason for furnace
breakdowns. Inspect heating and cooling equipment annually, or as recommended by the manufacturer. Have a professional check and clean furnaces once a year.
- Weatherstrip doors and windows. Inspect windows and doors for air leaks. If you can see daylight around a door or window frame, then the door or window needs sealing. Air leaks can be sealed with caulking or weather-stripping.
- Insulate water pipes coming from the water heater. Insulate the first 3- to 6-feet of cold and hot water pipes near the water heater. Insulating all hot water pipes is not necessary where pipes are located in a crawlspace or attic.
- Add an insulation blanket to water heater. Wrapping the water heater with an
insulation blanket can save heating money by slowing the drop in temperature from the hot water tank as it sits unused. Inexpensive insulation kits are available at most home improvement stores.
- Add insulation to attic. When adding insulation, start at the top and work down only after eliminating air infiltration.
In addition to following these simple tips, National Grid offers several high efficiency heating program incentives to help make your home more energy efficient. For more information visit the National Grid website or call 1-800-732-3400.
5. High near 61, low around 45
Today there is a 20 percent chance of showers before 9 a.m. It will be mostly cloudy, with a high near 61. Calm wind will become northeast around 6 mph in the morning. Tonight will be mostly cloudy, with a low around 45 and calm wind.
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