Winter’s cold days can be costly. Keep your home comfortable and your energy bill lower with these 7 energy-saving tips.
The average homeowner spends more than $2,200 a year on utilities. A good portion goes for heating and cooling.
The more severe the weather, the more energy your home’s HVAC system uses. This can increase your annual utility costs by hundreds of dollars .
You don’t have to settle for high heating costs this new year. Try these simple winter energy-saving tips to help keep your expenses lower.
Open Blinds in the Afternoon
When the sun shines in, it can raise the temperature several degrees. Your furnace won’t have to work as hard to keep your living space at the temperature you set on its thermostat.
The less your furnace works, the less energy it uses, and the more money you’ll save.
Pay attention to the sun’s position throughout the day. Open curtains or blinds when the sun shines against them. There may a bit of cold air around the window, but once the sun warms the glass, the room will quickly be toasty.
Cover Drafty Windows With Curtains
Your windows are one of the biggest sources of energy and heat loss. The average home’s HVAC system uses 25 to 30 percent more energy because of heat lost through the windows.
When the sun doesn’t shine into your home, cover up those large panes of glass. This helps keep cold air outside and your heated air in.
Use a thick fabric curtain to trap cold air against the glass. If you don’t have curtains, you can tack a blanket or insulating plastic film to create a better barrier against drafts.
Lower Thermostat When Away
Your home’s heating system works whether you’re there or not. If you’re away, there’s no reason to keep your thermostat cranked up all day long.
Lower the thermostat when you leave for work and turn it back up upon your return. Even lowering the setting a few degrees can save you hundreds.
Don’t set the thermostat lower than 55 degrees Fahrenheit. This assures your pipes won’t freeze, even if outside temperatures tumble.
Schedule an HVAC Tune-Up
Your home’s HVAC system needs regular maintenance to work properly. If you neglect maintenance or don’t repair minor issues, the system must work that much harder to keep your home comfortable.
This results in higher energy costs and can risk unexpected breakdowns.
Stay atop your unit’s maintenance – schedule a wintertime tune-up. Your HVAC technician will inspect your system and assure it works properly. If they spot damage, they can make repairs before major problems occur.
Check Your Chimney
Nothing is better on a cold winter evening than a roaring fire in the fireplace. Anytime you have a fire going, make sure the chimney flue is open to keep your home from filling with smoke.
But what happens when the fire’s out? If you’re like most people, you forget to close the flue.
Closing the flue can save you lots of money on heating bills. The flue opens your home to the cold air outside. When the wind blows, cold air can go right through your chimney and into your home. This forces your furnace to work harder.
Closing the flue when the fire is over keeps the cold air out and lowers your heating costs. Just remember to open it back up before you light your next fire.
Unblock Your Vents
What’s the biggest culprit for poor air circulation? Blocked heating vents.
Your furnace must push heated air throughout your home. If it can’t, your home stays cold and the system run longer to try to get the temperature up where you want it.
Inspect the vents in each room. Move any furniture that blocks them and wipe away dust and debris from vent covers.
Clean vents let air move freely throughout your home. Your HVAC system will heat your house faster and with less energy.
Close Off Unused Rooms
It’s simple. The more rooms you heat, the more energy your HVAC system must use. And energy costs a lot.
Don’t heat the rooms you’re not using. Pull their blinds or curtains and shut the door to close off the spaces.
This reduces the square footage your furnace must heat. The smaller the space, the less energy you use to keep your home comfortable.
If you have zoned heat, turn the thermostats in unused areas down to 55 degrees.
The Only Cost Is Your Time
These winter energy-saving tips are simple to implement and cost little but a few seconds of free-time. Try them at your house now and see how much money you save.
Although these tips help your system be more efficient, they’re not a replacement for a professional tune-up. Call us today at (402) 731-2727 to schedule an appointment and let us get your furnace ready for everything winter brings.