To help fight off the spike in electricity costs this winter, we’ve put together a guide to ensure that your home stays energy efficient throughout the cold winter months. Many of these tips are inexpensive to implement and can help you save large amounts of money in the long run.
Cheap Energy Efficient Solutions
Minimizing the amount of nonessential energy you are currently using in your home can help to reduce your monthly bills. These free energy efficiency tips can save you a pretty penny in the long haul:
1. Manage your water usage:
Approximately one-fifth of the average energy bill is spent on water usage and water heaters. By taking a few extra measures in managing your water usage, you’ll find that you can save on your monthly bills:
- take shorter, cooler showers
- prevent the water from running by fixing leaky faucets and pipes
- reduce the water heater temperature to 120 degrees fahrenheit
2. Choose more efficient holiday lighting:
Choosing energy-efficient LED holiday lights instead of older lighting methods can help reduce the impact on lighting costs during the holiday seasons. These devices also often have longer lifespans, meaning you can get more use out of them compared to older bulbs.
3. Stop leaking energy:
Electronic devices will still draw electricity even after you’ve shut them off for the night. When possible, avoid leaving any devices plugged in when not in use. The biggest perpetrator for leaking energy? Cell phone chargers!
Low-Cost Energy Efficient Home Improvements
These fixes are a little more expensive than the ones above, but can potentially lead to more savings.
1. Install an automatic temperature adjuster:
Equipping your home with smart thermostats can help regulate the temperature of your home and save you money. You can program these thermostats to change temperature at set times throughout the day. This way, you can lower the thermostat when during the hours you’re not at home and then raise it to a more comfortable temperature when you are.
2. Seal any leaky pipes in the home:
Also known as plumbing penetrations, these leaks in pipes can hinder energy efficiency, as can any gaps in the chimney, closets or cabinets. To treat these gaps, you may need to use foam, plumbing tape or replace fittings entirely (depending on the severity of the leak).
3. Have a professional maintain the heating system:
Although most of these tips can be done yourself, it’s a good idea to have a professional examine your heating system to ensure it’s working properly. A faulty heating system is not only expensive, but also potentially dangerous!
Effective Winter Renovations
If time and budget permit, there are a few extra considerations you can take to help ensure your home is running efficiently during winter. These improvements will almost certainly lead to increased savings!
1. Look for the Energy Star sticker:
Consider replacing old, outdated appliances with newer models that carry the Energy Star sticker. The inclusion of this sticker indicates that electronic devices and appliances have been designed to be as energy-efficient as possible. Devices with the Energy Star sticker can be up to 70 times more efficient than older models.
2. Add more ceiling insulation:
If there is little to no insulation in the ceiling or attic, your house will quickly get chilly when the temperatures start to drop. Adding insulation can help cut your energy bill by up to 25 percent and prevent warm air from escaping through the roof of your home.
3. Install storm windows:
Despite the name, these windows are fit to fight more than just stormy weather. Replacing single-pane windows with storm windows can reduce heat loss by more than 50 percent. Look for windows equipped with low-emissivity coatings to further cut heat loss!
Doug Ashy Helps You Save
We understand that winter energy bills can be expensive to manage. By using these tips, you can help lower your monthly energy bill and ensure that your home is as energy efficient as possible!
Whether you need materials for your winter renovations or guidance for home improvement, the specialists at Doug Ashy can help you address all of your home improvement needs.