Winter Time Is Here!
It’s Time to Winterize! These few small things can make a major difference in your energy usage over the winter months.
Drafts– Ever seen your curtains move on a cold blustery day? Well if you have, you have an issue with a window draft. Did you know drafts can waste between 5%-30% of your energy usage? It’s true, something as simple as a door or window draft can increase your heating bill dramatically. Even more if they draft blows across your thermostat. The fix is simple, reinsulated windows, recaulk and reseal, replace weather stripping on both doors and windows. If you have an older home you may want to use plastic to seal the window for the winter.
Furnace– Depending on your furnace you may want to have it cleaned and checked out professionally at the start of the each winter season. Something simple that you can do however is to be sure to change the filter. A dirty filter on your heating system can restrict airflow thereby increasing energy demand. So each month make a mark on the calendar to replace the filter.
Ceiling Fans– Ceiling fans are so often overlooked keep them clean moving freely. As winter approaches and the heating system comes on be sure to reverse your fan’s rotation. For winter you want your fan turning in a counterclockwise rotation. You do this simply by flipping the small switch located on most fans base unit. This forces the warm air down from the ceiling and can help energy costs by 10%.
Air Conditioner– If you use window units it’s especially important to either remove them from the window or winterize them. If the unit is to stay in your window then cover it tightly not allowing for air to come in the back. As most units come with the according side pull outs be sure to either cut insulation or wood to cover those areas. This will cut down drafts and that sneaky heat loss.
Pipes– If you have outdoor pipes or faucets be sure to insulate these well. No one wants to be dealing with a busted faucet or pipe in freezing weather. Wrap the pipe well in insulation made just for that, this will cut down on your loss. Did you know, insulation on pipes isn’t just for winter? Having your hot water pipes insulated could cut down on your energy usage. Hot water won’t cool as much by the time it reaches you, enabling you to turn your heater down. Each degree your hot water heater is turned down is energy savings to you.
Over all do these simple things and mind your thermostat, simply turning your heat down by 1 degree can reduce your energy usage by as much as 1%-3%. In the long run any reduction in energy usage is good for all of us.