Snow Melters. HeatTrak says its stair mats will prevent snow and ice buildup during a 2-inch-per-hour snowfall. Up to 10 mats can be connected to one another (in a parallel circuit) and plugged into a standard 120-volt outlet. More mats require a second power cord. Control options include a plug-in temperature sensor, a hard-wired snow sensor, and an outlet switch inside the entry door. The company also makes walkway mats. Stair mats cost $50 each. HeatTrak, 866/766-9628, heattrak.com.

Modulating Fireplace. In most gas fireplaces the flame is either on or off, but the 864 TRV GreenSmart unit adjusts its flame height based on the temperature setting. It can be run in standing-pilot mode — in which the pilot stays on to maintain draft — or electronic-ignition mode, in which the pilot turns off when the fireplace does, saving...

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