Winter is almost upon us, but just because the thermostat is starting to go up doesn’t mean your energy bill has to go up, too. Check out these tips to help you save energy and money during the cold winter months.
Audit your energy usage – a home energy audit can help determine where you can save the most, and which big and small investments could be beneficial for long-term energy savings.
Be mindful of windows – opening curtains on south-facing windows during the day will allow sunlight to naturally heat your home. Be sure to close them at night to reduce the chill you may feel from cold windows. Tight fitting, insulating drapes or blinds tend to be the most effective at keeping out the cold.
Find and seal leaks – locate and seal air leaks around windows, cut-through pipes, gaps around chimneys and recessed lights in insulated ceilings and unfinished spaces behind cupboard and closets that may be allowing cold air inside. Learn more about how to detect air leaks here.
Control your thermostat – when you are home and awake, set your thermostat as low as is comfortable. When you are asleep or out of the house, consider turning your thermostat back a few degrees to help provide additional savings on your heating and cooling bills. A smart or programmable thermostat can make it easy to control your temperature without having to remember to set it manually.
Maintain your heating systems – routine service and maintenance on your heating system will help keep it running efficiently. Replace your filter according to the recommended instructions on your system. Clean the flue vent of wood and pellet burning heat sources regularly and don’t forget to have the chimney swept!
Reduce heat loss from the fireplace – be mindful to close the damper unless a fire is burning. An open damper is the same as having an open window and allows warm air to go out of the chimney. Also, check the seal on the fireplace flue damper and make it as snug as possible.
Save money on water heating – turn down the temperature of your water heater to the warm setting (120°F). You’ll not only save energy, but you’ll also reduce the potential of scalding burns.
Use energy-efficient holiday lights – LED light strands are both brighter and more energy efficient than traditional lights, thus you will save energy and money as well as saving the cost of replacing them as often.
Enroll in a fixed rate energy plan – many consumers have the power to choose an energy supplier like AEP Energy to manage the supply portion of their energy bills. Energy suppliers can offer market-based rates that may be lower than the utility. When you choose AEP Energy you enjoy secure energy supply prices while receiving the same service and bill from your local utility. You can see all our energy options in your area here!