October 28, 2010
Sunny summer days are a thing of the past as the cold winter weeks approach us, so here are some energy saving tips to help keep you warm without burning a whole through your wallet.
- Take Advantage of Heat from the Sun. Open your blinds during the day and let in the free heat from the sun. Just be sure to close the blinds at night and keep the winter chill out of your home.
- Cover Drafty Windows. Use a heavy-duty, clear plastic sheet on a frame or tape clear plastic film to the inside of your window frames during the cold winter months to reduce air infiltration. You can also install tight-fitting, insulating shades or drapes to help out as well.
- Adjust the Temperature. Set your thermostat as low as you are comfortable with to save energy and money. Also, try turning your thermostat back 10°–15° whenever you leave your home or go to sleep and you can save around 10% a year on your heating and cooling bills.
- Find and Seal Leaks. Use caulk and add weatherstripping to seal any air leaks around you home. Look for openings around utility or plumbing penetrations, gaps around chimneys and recessed lights in insulated ceilings, unfinished spaces behind cupboards and closets, as well as leaky doors and windows.
- Maintain Your Heating System. Schedule service for your HVAC and remember to replace your furnace filter once a month or as needed. If you have a Wood- and Pellet-burning heaters, be sure to clear your flue vent regularly and clean the inside of the appliance with a wire brush periodically. Also, keep your fireplace damper closed unless you have a fire going.
- Lower Your Water Heating Costs. If you haven’t already, turn the temperature of your water heater down to120°F. This will still keep your showers hot but your energy bill cool. Also be sure to drain 1 or 2 gallons from the bottom of the water heater to help reduce sediment build up.
- Lower Your Holiday Lighting Costs. Try using ENERGY STAR®-qualified or LED holiday light strings to reduce the cost of decorating your home for the winter holidays.
Check out this article from The U.S. Department of Energy for more information.