Useful Winter Energy Saving Tips by EnRoute Team on January 18, 2010
Keep in mind that your home's heating and cooling system makes up about half of your total annual energy bill. Read how you can save energy and stay warm with these cool weather home energy-saving tips.
- Have your heating or cooling equipment checked each and every season by a qualified technician to make sure it is operating properly. Heating and cooling account for about half of the energy costs for the average home.
- Keep your thermostat at the lowest comfortable setting. If you are going to be away for several days, turn the thermostat to a lower setting, but not to "off."
- Change air filters every month. Dirty filters can increase operating costs.
- Make sure heat registers and vents are not blocked by draperies, furniture or rugs. These vents should also be cleaned regularly with a vacuum or a broom.
- Check your heating system's ductwork to ensure that it is well insulated.
- Make sure your home is adequately insulated. If you currently have little or no insulation in your attic, exterior walls, or floors above cold spaces, installing insulation will cut your energy bills dramatically.
- Weather-strip around doors and windows. Seal cracks or crevices where two different building materials meet. It's also a good idea to weatherstrip between heated and unheated areas such as garages, basements and attic openings.
- If you have a window air conditioning unit, remove it for the winter months to prevent heat from escaping through and around the unit. If it cannot be moved, buy an inexpensive cover to prevent drafts.
- Always make sure the fireplace damper seals tightly and remains closed except when a fire is burning or smoldering in the fireplace.
- Insulate your water heater with at least R-6 insulation. Your water heater is the second-largest energy user in your home. You can save enough money in energy bills to pay back the cost of materials within months and then keep on saving.
- Take advantage of natural solar heat. On sunny days, leave the draperies open to allow the sun's rays to warm your house.
- Ceiling fans help keep you comfortable not only in the summer but in the winter as well. Reversing the direction of the blades pushes warm air down into the room. Fans should turn counter-clockwise in the summer and clockwise in the winter.
For more helpful tips, check back or call the EnRoute Team today!