Winter means long months of snow and the cold. Holidays come to mind, fireplaces, hot casseroles and chocolate drinks, not to mention sky-high energy bills to pay.
Freezing weather means you have to turn your heating system up to satisfactory levels to keep everything comfy and cozy inside the house, but there are other ways to save up on heating costs, and you can find these nifty tips in this article.
Invest on a programmable thermostat
This gadget will help you regulate your abode’s temperature all day. It will also prove beneficial to folks who keep forgetting to turn the heat down before going off to work or before bedtime.
Minimize drafts from happening
Seal air leaks, cover drafty doors and windows to reduce heating device usage. You can cover your windows up with plastic so heat won’t come out. In addition, stopper small spaces with fabric scraps.
Tone down your water heater use
120 degrees Fahrenheit is still hot and you will get used to it. Heating water at this temperature will cut back your heating costs by a good 6-10 percent. You can also invest on a solar water heater, but it will set you more than a few hundred bucks initially.
Replace furnace filters
The heating system works double time if your furnace filters are dirty since it limits the flow of air. Because it’s working harder than ever, it can amount to higher heating costs. The furnace filters must be changed every few month’ in the course of the colder seasons.
Use efficient filters since it will catch more allergens and other hazardous elements in the air, thus this will reduce your medical bills as well.
Weather-stripping and caulk are your friends
Be mindful of these areas around your house: pipes, wires, chimneys and corners. Warm air during winter can leak out of these places, not only your doors and windows. Check to see if warm air leaks out of those areas, then seal them up by means of caulk and weather-strip them.
Plug those ducts up
Before winter sets in, make an appointment with a professional who can assess the house’s duct system and verify whether the parts need to be plugged up or reconditioned. You have to spend money on it but guaranteeing that there are no leaks in the ductwork can help you big time on energy savings. In addition, improved ducts can also safeguard your house against dust, fungus and mildew growth.
Pad up your attic and basement
Cold air trapped in those areas can further energy costs. Insulations done on oft-ignored areas like the attic, basement and crawl spaces can cut down your heating bills by a good 15 percent. It’s pricey, insulating your whole attic can be but rest assured that your investment will be compensated by succeeding seasons.
Obstruct your chimney
Check the chimney and see if the damper is securely closed. Doing this can help hold back warm air from leaving the house by way of the chimney.
Purchase a space heater
If you are only using one room, it is recommended that you invest on a space heater. Put it in the area you use the most (your bedroom while you sleep, the kitchen or if you are working at home, your work area). By limiting the heat in one area, turning down thermostat is in the cards. If you want to increase the temperature in the living room, you can also opt for an electric fireplace that will warm up your house and create a nice cosy atmosphere!
Set up a low-flow shower head
Indulging in long, hot baths in the dead of winter is a tempting idea, but remember that the more water a shower head gives off, more heat is required to warm it up. To cut down energy bills and at the same time, water bills, you can invest on a low-flow shower head. To add, if you want to save more on heating, you can insulate the water tank as well.
Tale advantage of sunlight any way you can
If your house has stone or concrete floors, take advantage of the heat as the sun rises. Those materials have sizable thermal mass so they can take in plenty of heat and disperse it in a slow manner. Open your curtains facing south and catch all of the heat before the sun goes down once again.
Use a low-speed fan to gather warm air
Cold air dwells nearer to the ground while warm air goes up. You can get that warm air back by setting your electric fan into reverse so it distributes warm downwards to meld with the leftover air inside the room. This method will make the ambient temperature of the room rise up.
Minimize heat loss from your fireplace
Unless you are burning a fire, keep the fireplace’s damper closed at all times. Leaving it open will permit warm air to escape by means of the chimney. You can also decrease heat loss by unlocking dampers in the bottom parts of the firebox then lower the setting of the thermostat between 50 degrees and 55 degrees Fahrenheit.
If you do not use it, make sure that the chimney flue is blocked and sealed securely. If you use it occasionally in the winter, set up a heat and air exchange system that can gust heated air back inside the room. Installing tempered glass doors will also help.
Inspect if the fireplace flue damper seal is secured. Invest on grates with curved metal tubing to suck in cold air into the fireplace and disperse heated air inside the area. Lastly, you can caulk the hearth of the fireplace to seal in the heat.
Always inspect the furnace
Thorough maintenance is always a plus; in order to draw out your appliance’s lifespan and keep it in tiptop condition, you have to inspect it to see if those appliances or devices need improvement, repairs, or replacements. Keep your furnace maintained, clean it regularly and adjust it as it should be. Kindly ask for the assistance of a nearby utility company or furnace manufacturer regarding yearly furnace assessments.
For many families, winter can be the most expensive season with the electric bill going twice as much because of all the heating that needs to be done. Investing in good quality products and performing routine maintenance regularly can mean more savings for your family in the long run. Read more tips about heating and cooling on our website.