Even though the worst of winter is behind us, you know as well as we do that Ohio weather can be very unpredictable. With March and April still ahead of us bringing fluctuating temperatures, spring rains, and even some occasional snow, keeping warm is still a priority.
Here are ten tips that will help save you money in the coming months:
1. Lower Thermostat
Keep your thermostat just below the most comfortable setting. Then wear socks, sweatshirts, and other warm clothing to keep yourself as warm as you want. Throw a blanket on the coach to use while napping or watching TV. You can save about 3% for every degree you lower the thermostat. Also remember to reduce the temperature at night or when you are away.
2. Change Furnace Filter
Changing your furnace filters regularly will keep your furnace running a peak efficiency. By making life easy on your furnace, you allow it to heat your home more quickly and thoroughly.
3. Tend Your Heat Pump
If you have a heat pump, be sure to keep the outdoor unit free from debris such as grass, leaves, or drifting snow. This tip is also true for your air conditioning unit in the summertime.
4. Seal Air leaks
If you have air leaks in your doors and windows, you can be sure that you’re losing heat through them. Lots of little leaks can add up to a large energy expense, so make sure that you seal up leaky doors and windows with weather stripping, caulk, or whatever is best in your particular application. If you don’t know what to use, consult a professional to learn more.
5. Use the Sunshine
Use the Sun ! Open shades or curtains on sunny days, and keep closed on cloudy days & at night. The sun is the greatest heat source on earth and t’s FREE! If you make a point to open your drapes and blinds when it’s sunny outside, nature will help you warm up the house. By the same token, closing the drapes and blinds when it’s not sunny will help to retain the heat in your home.
6. Returns and Registers
If you have a central air system in your house, it’s made up of registers and returns. Returns are where air is pulled from your house and circulated through the furnace. Registers are where the furnace blows the heated air back into your house. You can increase the efficiency of your returns by making sure that they are not obstructed by stuff lying around. You can increase the efficiency of your registers by closing off the ones in rooms that are used less often.
7. Fix the Fireplace
If you have a wood-burning fireplace, be sure to close the damper when it is not in use. The damper is a door in the chimney just above where you build the fire. It is usually controlled by a lever or crank of some kind. It must remain open when you light a fire so that smoke can escape your home, but when you’re not burning a fire, an open damper can allow large amounts of warm air to escape making it harder to heat your home.
8. Insulate Your Outlets
Some outlets are in a hollow wall – where air seeps in, you can insulate these outlets with outlet insulation ( sold at local hardware stores)
9. Attic/Crawl Spaces
If your crawl space is open, it will keep the floor above it cold. If your attic access is open, it will allow warm air from your house to leak into the attic and be lost to the outside. Close vents & seal access panels to your attic and/or crawl space. You can use caulk and/or insulation to do the job.
10. Use Ceiling fans
Many times we think of fans as just being used for cooling things down. However, they can play an important role when it comes to heat as well. Instead of thinking about fans in terms of hot and cold, think of them in terms of moving or stagnant air. Warm air rises, so when you heat your home, the warmest air will always be close to the ceiling. By running your ceiling fan at low speed, you can push that air that you paid to heat back down where it will do you the most good.