How to save money on heating:
- According to the U.S. Department of Energy, lower your thermostat at least 10 degrees for eight hours. Some families choose to drop the temperature in the house during the day, when most family members are out of the house. Another option is to drop it at night, and stay warm by bundling up with more blankets.
- Adjust your water heater to 120 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Seal gaps around windows, doors, electrical outlets, and where pipes come into your home. Insulate attic doors, too. Doors or windows that you won’t use during the winter months can be sealed with plastic in the fall until the warmer spring months.
- Replace your furnace’s filter regularly for greater efficiency.
- Keep the humidity in your home at approximately 40 percent. Moist air feels warmer, which helps save energy.
- Set ceiling fan blades in your home to rotate in reverse. Running fans in this manner pushes warm air near the ceiling down towards the floor where it’s more useful.
- Utilize your fireplace more. Some experts advise against using your fireplace, citing that the warm air generated merely goes out the chimney. But, check out this link for tips on greater efficiency.
- Insulate pipes.
How to save on electricity:
- Turn off lights in unused rooms or utilize a timer.
- Use major appliances such as your stove, dishwasher, and clothes washer and dryer after 9 p.m.
- Turn off and unplug electronics and appliances when they’re not in use.
- If you have a smart phone, consider a system that will allow you to monitor your energy use at home through your phone.
Additional tips on saving money at home:
- Dress warmer. Wear sweaters, extra socks, and layer clothing during the day; get out the flannel pajamas for you and your family to wear to bed. Use extra or heavier blankets on beds to keep warm while sleeping.
- Take advantage of the sun. During daylight hours, open shades, blinds, and curtains and allow the sunlight to naturally heat your home.
- Consider an energy assessment. This will alert you of any potential problems with your home systems and can also provide money saving options.
- Enlist the help of your family. Teaching your children the importance of conserving energy and saving money is a great lesson at any age. By making your entire family part of the process, you’re more likely to be successful in your energy saving efforts.
Where to go for additional information:
Visit www.energy.gov for more information and money saving tips on conserving energy and saving money this winter.