Energy Efficiency Tips for the Colder Months
There are a number of things you can do to stay warm while being energy efficient this winter. Improving your home’s energy efficiency has a number of great benefits which include – reduced energy costs, making your home warmer and more comfortable, and reducing your carbon footprint.
- Make sure your home is properly insulated: Homeowners lose hundreds of thousands of dollars each year from heated and cooled air escaping through poor or improper insulation. Make sure your home is properly insulated.
- Eliminate drafts: Is it possible that you have heat escaping to the outdoors? Check doors and windows to see if there are gaps or broken seals that need to be fixed. Simple caulking will solve most cracks in window seals. Your front door is often a culprit for sneaking warm air out and cold air in, so make sure you do not see light seeping in anywhere around the door. You can easily add adhesive weather strips around the edges and bottom to block these openings.
- Let the sun shine in: Take advantage of the world’s best furnace – the sun! Naturally, heat your home by drawing the curtains of south-facing windows during the day. Weatherproofing your windows can also help heat from escaping. During the winter, up to 30% of your home’s heat can be escaping through low-efficiency windows.
- Heat only where you need: Only heat the rooms you use most often. If you have rooms that you don’t use regularly (like a guest room or a storage room), close off and seal the vents to those rooms. This will not only make your home more energy-efficient but will redirect the flow of air to the rooms you use more often. The Department of Energy reports that setting your thermostat to 62 degrees and using space heaters where needed can save you up to $200 per year on energy bills.
- Control your water temperature: Set your water heater thermostat at 120°F or lower. This way you’ll reduce the amount of energy it takes to produce and maintain your hot water by not overheating it.
Get a Home Energy Check
A certified home energy audit is the first step to assess how much energy your home consumes and to pinpoint where energy inefficiencies are occurring. By identifying and fixing these inefficiencies, a home can typically save up to 20% of heating and cooling costs. As a member of the Home Performance with ENERGY STAR Program, we’ll help your home become more cost-efficient and more comfortable.