Homeowners in the North are accustomed to high energy bills in the winter. With average low temperatures in the twenties and thirties, you're doing anything you can to stay warm in your home - but when it comes time to pay that utility bill, you're cringing at the cost of staying warm and cozy. Or, maybe you're looking for a way to reduce your impact on the environment. Whether you're looking to save a little green or just want to go green, we've gathered some simple tips and tricks for saving energy in your home this winter.
Check Your Insulation
Every year, Americans lose thousands of dollars due to improper insulation. Keep warm air in during the winter and cool air during the summer through proper insulation. Not sure how your insulation stands up to winter weather? Complete a thorough inspection of your current insulation in your home. You can get some inexpensive insulation from your local home improvement store to touch up and cover the areas where heat might escape. You should also check doors and windows to ensure you have proper weather stripping to avoid letting warm air leak out in the winter. What's more, weather stripping helps prevent not only air leaks, but also prevents pests from sneaking through worn stripping. Insulation also offers pest-related benefits. Pests like rodents and cockroaches find your attic a warm place to nest, especially in the cold winter months. If your attic has been invaded by these pests, they have probably left behind feces and other materials that create a health hazard for you and your family. Rejuvenate your attic by replacing your existing insulation and experience the benefits of additional pest protection and lower energy bills!
Adjust the Thermostat at Night
According to the U.S. Department of Energy, you can save about 10% each year on your heating bills by turning your thermostat down 10 to 15 degrees for eight hours. Worried you might be too cold? A set of flannel sheets and a warm comforter can add the extra warmth and coziness you're looking for. You can also bundle up and wear layers if you're willing to keep your home a few extra degrees cooler throughout the day.
Turn Out the Lights
You'd be surprised at the amount of energy usage you can reduce by focusing on your lighting solutions. Turn off lights when they aren’t in use and take advantage of natural sunlight during the day. The sun will also help warm your home's interior. Additionally, replace your existing household lighting with LEDs. LED lights last 25 times longer than incandescent lights and use 75% less energy.
Beware of Energy Vampires
Energy vampires, also known as phantom loads, is the energy home appliances draw in when they're in standby mode, costing the average U.S. homeowner up to $100 a year. Keep home electronics unplugged when they're not in use. $100 may not seem like much, but imagine those savings over time!
The typical American spends at least $2000 on their home energy bills each year, but there are many steps you can take to reduce that monthly cost. These are just a few of the many ways you can use less energy in your home this winter! Give them a try today!