Many homeowners find themselves dealing with larger energy bills during the fall and winter months. Luckily, there are multiple things you can do to conserve energy during the colder months:
Old-Fashioned Solar Power
On sunny days, open the curtains on south-facing windows to allow the sunlight to naturally heat your home. At night and on overcast days, keep the curtains closed to reduce the chill from cold windows.
Reduce Drafts from Windows
Lock your windows to seal them tightly shut, and then install clear, heavy-duty plastic over them to reduce cold drafts during winter. Make sure that the plastic is sealed tightly around the window frame and avoid any gaps. In addition, consider hanging thick, insulating curtains, drapes, or shades to keep drafts at bay.
Lower the Thermostat
While awake and at home, turn your thermostat as low as is comfortable. While you are asleep or out of the house, turn your thermostat down 10-15 degrees. It is a myth that your furnace “works harder” to re-heat a cold room- in fact, turning your thermostat down while you’re asleep or away can cut your heating bill by 10% or more. There are multiple programmable thermostats available on the market- some as affordable as $25- to help you cut costs.
Keep Heating Registers Clear
If your home has floor heating registers, be sure to keep them completely uncovered. Any furniture placed over a register is limiting the flow of heat- the same as if you had the vent partially or completely closed.
Find and Seal Leaks Around Pipes, Vents, Outlets, Doors, and Windows.
Seal the air leaks around utility cut-throughs for pipes and vents, as well as gaps around chimneys and recessed lights in insulated ceilings. Fill the gaps around electrical outlets with insulating foam, and install an insulating foam gasket before replacing the cover. In addition, add caulk or weatherstripping to seal air leaks around leaky doors and windows.