As the East Coast learned this week, we’ve still got some winter left to go.
Adapting to the year’s cold stretch is never easy. Try as you might, all the hot coffee and extra thick socks won’t be able to stave off the inevitable: that rising heating bill. Here are some guidelines to help you save home energy during winter.
Micromanage Your Heating
It pays to be a stickler inside your home.
To save home energy during winter, you’ll need to be as controlling of your indoor temperature as possible. The home base of this operation will be your thermostat. Keep the average temperature as cool as you can comfortably withstand. You don’t need to put parkas and snow pants on to use the bathroom, but throwing on a hoodie and keeping the house at a cool 65℉ can have huge payoffs.
To counteract this change, invest in space heaters. These devices will cost far less in the long run than keeping the whole house at a warmer temperature. You can also selectively heat the house, helping you focus your funding toward the rooms you use most.
If you’re susceptible to skin irritation from the dry winter air, humidifiers will usually be a sufficient balance to your home’s air quality without running up the energy bill. The moisture they add to dry air also helps avoid household issues often caused by winter heating, such as static electricity, peeling wallpaper, and cracks in paint and furniture.
You should also adjust the settings on your water heater. If the model permits, change the temperature to the warm setting (often around 120℉). This change can also slows the buildup of minerals and corrosion in your heater and pipes.
Seal Up The Cracks
One of the most effective measures you can take to save home energy during winter is simply sealing up the cold’s opportunities to get in your home.
First, you should conduct a visual inspection of your home. On the outside of your home, take a close look at all corners, faucets, and sidings. If two different materials (brick and panel, concrete and soil, etc.) meet, that’s the spot you should check.
Inside your home, look at doorways and windows particularly. Other culprits of drafts can be found in wall-mounted air conditioners, outlets, vents, fans, or pipes. Look for any plumbing, ducting, or electrical wiring that is coming through walls, floors, ceilings, and soffits over cabinets. Exhaust fans in both the kitchen and bathroom are common culprits of escaping hot air; monitor their use aggressively, or just shut them off completely.
Once you’ve identified the source of the leak, you can caulk or weatherstrip the spot to prevent further energy loss. You should also consider speaking to an HVAC professional if the extent of your sealant needs more work than you are comfortable performing.
One of the most effective ways to save home energy during winter is by investing in insulation. If you live in an area that sees harsh winters, upgrading your insulation is a worthwhile option for your home’s long-term health.
Ideally, your home should be insulated from head to toe. When done properly, the product improves resistance to heat flow, will cut both heating and cooling costs, and improve the overall comfort level of your home.
Talk to a professional and see if your home is ready for an insulation upgrade. yellowblue™ multi-layer reflective insulation is specifically designed to increase the thermal efficiency and reducing radiant, conduction, and convection heat transfer.
Stick To The Essentials
There are a number of amenities around your home which, when not in use, can lead to more drastic energy loss. You’ll need to use only what you need to save home energy during winter.
Take the fireplace for example. While some may try to use this as a supplement to their home’s heating, poor maintenance can leave your home colder than it was before. Keep your fireplace damper closed so hot air cannot escape through the chimney. If you aren’t planning on using your fireplace in the near future, seal up the chimney flue so no air can escape at all.
Consider installing blackout curtains for the winter. During the day, you can heat your home by leaving the windows open and taking advantage of the sun; at night, the darker color and material of the curtains will help retain heat inside your home.
Don’t forget to take down any holiday lights you may still have up. Decorations can be a subtle sap on your funds as the months draw on. You can always keep them up if the daily cheer is worth the price, but if not, embrace the new year and put the inflatable Frosty back in the garage.
Find What You Need
Contact us today to see what insulation or other energy-saving projects we can help you undergo.