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20 Ways to Lower Winter Energy Costs

20 Ways to Lower Winter Energy Costs

With the weather beginning to turn colder, your heating bills will start to go up.  You know we will tell you that you can reduce your heating bills by making sure your furnace is properly maintained, and you may even want to consider buying a new furnace.  But you don’t need us to implement other things to lower your energy costs.  Here are 20 suggestions.

Air Leaks

1.    Caulk and seal air leaks around doors and windows.
2.    Make sure weather stripping in exposed door frames is still in good shape.
3.    Fill in the gaps around cut-throughs for pipes, gaps around chimneys and recessed lights in insulated ceilings, and unfinished spaces behind cupboards and closets.

Rest Your Furnace

4.    Buy a programmable thermostat and program it to be lower when you are asleep or out of the house.
5.    Open your blinds or shades during the day to let the sun warm your home.  Then close them at night.
6.    Rearrange furniture so you are sitting near interior walls.
7.    Set ceiling fans to go clockwise, this forcing warmer air down.
8.    Add a blanket and layer up so you can set the thermostat lower and still be comfortable.
9.    Make sure your ceiling is well insulated.
10.    Close the doors to rooms you are not using and make sure the vents in those rooms are closed.

Water

11.    Set your water heater to 120⁰ F.  If you have an older water heater, wrap an insulating blanket around it.
12.    Shorten your showers.  Cutting your showers in half will reduce your water heating costs by 33%.
13.    Install low flow showerheads.
14.    Only use your dishwasher and washing machine when you have full loads.  Cold water will also save energy.

Lighting

15.    Replace incandescent lights with LED bulbs.
16.    If nobody is in the room, make sure the lights are out.
17.    Decorate with LED lights for the holidays.

Other

18.    Make sure the fireplace damper is closed when not in use.
19.    Unplug appliances, electronics, etc. when they are not in use.
20.    Have a comprehensive energy audit.

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*Based on research conducted January - August 2016