NeighborWorks® of Grays Harbor contributes to the community conversation on housing issues through a weekly column in the Daily World titled "Nailing it Down."


 Since 1999, the "Nailing it Down"articles have been published in the Daily World and other countywide weekly newspapers. NeighborWorks® of Grays Harbor County has collaborated with local newspapers, elected officials and local experts to publish articles covering hundreds of topics.



Nailing It Down

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December 6, 2019

Many households on Grays Harbor got a skiff of snow over the Thanksgiving weekend. White or not outside, the mercury has definitely dipped and even if it’s not officially winter yet, it sure feels like it!

We’re not sure what’s in store for the next few weeks and months, but there’s nothing like a cold snap to focus our attention on making homes more weather resistant!

It’s not too late to make yourself more comfortable and your house tighter in this cold. Here are some common questions for cold-proofing your house.

Q. Can I close my foundation vents to prevent heat loss?

A.  Yes. Are you surprised? We’re strong advocates of ventilating your house to keep moisture at bay.  However, we do recommend closing your foundation vents as long as the temperature remains below freezing. It will keep the house more comfortable and save on your heating bill. (Just make sure to open them up again when the weather gets a bit warmer!)

 Q. Can my pipes freeze when the temperature is at or below 32 deg...

September 30, 2019

Last week we talked about a variety of other heating devices that we tend to use in the Pacific Northwest and how to check them out now for efficiency and safety concerns before the heating season kicks in.

There’s nothing like cooler weather – and the first heating bill of the season – to get one thinking about alternatives.

Today we’re going to talk about the benefits of one of our favorite heating system – the ductless heat pump.


In this climate, a regular outside heat pump and inside air handler furnace is often an efficient way to heat a house. The technology of a heat pump basically recovers any heat from outside air and transfers it via a closed-loop refrigerant gas to the inside air handler – furnace inside your house. The air handler blows circulating air through a radiator coil that was heated by the gas and that is what is delivered through the house in your ducts.

In the summer, it will do the reverse – drying out the indoor air and pulling the heat ou...

September 23, 2019

The experts are predicting a wet and cold winter this year. So, we thought this was the perfect time to remind you of what kinds of maintenance your heating system might need. For some, what follows are easy checks, for others it may involve calling a handy man. Either way, ensuring a safely heated house for the winter is a good idea!


Various aspects of heating a home are some of the leading causes of home fire deaths, but a few simple safety tips can make all the difference.

Half of home heating fires occur during the months of December, January and February. So, now is an especially good time to address any concerns. Here are some heating safety tips from the National Fire Protection Association:

  • Keep anything that can burn at least three feet away from heating equipment such as a fireplace, furnace, wood stove or portable space heater.

  • Have a three-foot “kid-free zone” around open fires and space heaters.

  • Have a qualified professional install s...

February 18, 2019

Heat pumps. They are something we’ve mentioned a lot over the years. In particular, we’ve mentioned the ductless heat pump the last few years as a good choice for steady, inexpensive heat in our climate for a relatively small investment. Today we’re going to sing their praises again. If you have an older house that is in need of a new heating system, make sure to keep reading! 


In this climate, a heat pump is an efficient way to heat and cool a house. The technology of a heat pump basically recovers heat from outside air and transfers it to inside your house. Fans circulate air past coils outside to capture the heat. Then it goes via a high pressure closed-loop refrigerant line to a coil inside the house where another fan circulates air past the inside coil which is heated by the gas.

In the summer, it will do the reverse –pulling the heat out of the inside air then blowing it off at the outside heat pump. The returning refrigerant gas cools the coil and is circulated...

February 10, 2019

Energy costs are high this time of year, so in recent weeks we’ve been talking about ways to stay comfortable and keep the costs down in your home. In this blog we’ll talk about the cost of running some things – like portable heaters – and also how you can get rebates for a variety of energy-saving measures.


In a cold snap like we’ve been having, many people opt to use an electric space heater to keep the temperature in part of the house a little more comfortable. However, depending on how much it is used, that can turn into a costly addition.

Recently we talked with Dan Kinnaman, energy adviser at the Grays Harbor PUD, who said that most space heaters switched on high use 1,500 watts of electricity. With our current cost of electricity at 8.73 cents per kilowatt/hour, if that heater was on for an entire day it would cost $3.14. Now that’s not too bad if there is a two-day need to make things more comfortable in your home, but if a space heater is used for an enti...

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710 E. Market Street 
Aberdeen, WA 98520

1-866-533-7828 toll-free
360-533-7828 phone 
360-533-7851 fax

Mon - Thu 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. 

Closed Fri-Sun

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