In the winter the days become shorter, darker, colder and it becomes more expensive to heat up your home. Each year the cost of heating oil goes up and electricity is not cheap either. When the colder weather begins, people start to think of the best way they can save money but still keep their home at a reasonable and comfortable temperature. Sure, putting on a sweater and socks can keep you warm but not when it really starts to get chilly out there. Luckily, besides of packing on the layers there are other ways to heat your home at a reasonable price. Here are 10 great tips that will help you reduce your bill this winter:
- Air leaks- Whether you live in a new or old house, drafty windows will allow air and heat to sneak out. It is important to seal up air leaks to keep the heat inside your home. By sealing air leaks you can save about 30% in energy savings.
- Thermostat- Turning the heat off in your home during the day is not a good way to conserve energy. In fact, you will pay more when you come home and crack up the thermostat to get it warm in your home again. Invest in a programmable thermostat. If you schedule your thermostat to drop eight degrees during the day and again for 10 hours at night, you can save up to $180 a year.
- Let sunlight in- During the day it’s important to let in as much natural heat as possible. Closing your curtains when dusk falls will maximise your house’s potential to retain that heat.
- Proper insulation- Insulation is perhaps the most important feature to keep a home warm during the winter and cool in the summer. Make sure that you have the proper level of insulation in both the attic and between the inside walls to save money. Heat rises and easily escapes through the attic if it is not properly insulated.
- Fireplace- Fireplaces are a great way to heat up a room in a matter of minutes. However, they do have their drawbacks. If the damper is left open when the fireplace is not being used it allows heated air to escape and cold air to come into your home. After every use, close the damper but also make sure you open it before you enjoy a cozy fire or your home will fill with smoke.
- Ceiling fans- If you change the direction of the blades, the hot air will be sent down along the walls. Circulating air back through the room will heat the room and ease the effort of your heater by keeping the room at a comfortable temperature.
- Space heaters- They can be an energy-efficient option in a poorly insulated house. They can also work if you have central heating because you can turn down your home’s main heating system. Then you can put a space heater in a room that you and your family tend to gather in for a few hours- like a family or living room. Just keep in mind that you should clear a 3-foot zone around the space heater, never plug the unit into an extension cord and remember to turn off and unplug the heater when unattended.
- Area rugs- During the winter months, they can be used for just more than a design element. They add another layer of insulation to the floor and trap the cool air underneath while keeping it from seeping up and cooling the room down. They are also great if you have hard wood floors.
- Check your furance- A furnace that’s dirty, not properly working or has leaks in the ductwork or distribution system will not be efficient. They can blow hot air in the floor and attic instead of into the house. Depending on the age and condition of your unit, replacement may lower heating bills by 30%.
- Pull out an electric blanket- They use very little energy and are a great solution for when your family members can’t agree on a room temperature. As always, remember to unplug the device when it is not in use.
Use all of these great tips to make sure your home is efficient and warm this winter for a reasonable price.
For more information on this topic or to discuss your insurance needs, please contact us at 888.304.6678 or visit our virtual insurance office.