Winter Energy Saving Tips

Take a look at these energy-saving best practices.

Use a Humidifier

Indoor air, particularly in winter, can have humidity levels as low as 10 percent, but the ideal humidity level for your home is between 30-40 percent. Using a humidifier can offer a variety of benefits including fighting dry skin, soothing the respiratory system, protecting your furniture, and making your home feel warmer. The more moisture that is in the air, the warmer it will feel.

Program Your Smart Thermostat

A smart thermostat is Wi-Fi enabled and can be programmed to automatically adjust heating and cooling temperature settings in your home for optimal performance. Optimizing your temperature settings will help you save money. By lowering the thermostat 8 degrees during the daytime while away from home and during nighttime when you sleep, you can save up to $180 a year.

Let In the Sun

Follow the sun’s lead! Take advantage of the sun’s path by opening the curtains on south-facing windows in your home during the day to capture the sun’s natural warmth. It’s an efficiency win because the sun’s energy is free. It’s important that after the heat is harnessed to close the curtains to keep the heat in.

In Between the Cracks

Sealing air leaks in drafty buildings can save more than 20 percent on your heating bill. Apply tape or felt weather stripping to doors and caulk the joints around window frames and between the frame and the wall. Foam sealing may be a little easier but could trigger an assortment of illnesses. Weather stripping  can be low-cost and easy to do yourself. Remember, measure twice, cut once!

Dust Off Those Ceiling Fans

Are the ceiling fans in your home sitting still all winter? Most modern ceiling fans have a “winter” setting, which reverses the fan so that it moves clockwise instead of counterclockwise, pushing the heat near the ceiling down into the room. This is especially helpful if you have high or sloped ceilings. When operating the fan clockwise be sure to use the low setting as not to cool the warmer air you’re trying to circulate.

Check Your Vents, Move Your Furniture

Check that your home’s heating vents aren’t blocked. This will make sure every room is getting its maximum heat potential. Blocked return vents in a forced-air central heating system also could cause air pressure issues, which further disrupts the flow of heat. In addition, mildew and mold could grow in organic fabrics that block air flow.

BONUS: Keep Yourself Warm at Home

Regulating our home’s temperature is more difficult and costly than regulating our own. When home, wear a warm robe or sweater, break out the throw blankets, and invest in decent slippers. Being comfortable is key — you don’t want the thermostat so low that you have to wear a coat in your own home. But considering the potential cost savings, you may be able to find comfort with the thermostat just a couple degrees lower.

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