The past few days we have been dealing with some of the coldest days so far this season. Although we’ve had snow in October during previous years, I still wasn’t ready for the ridiculously cold temperatures that crept in.
Typically, cold weather also means high heating costs. One way to counteract the higher than normal utility costs is by having an energy efficient home. Today I’m going to share 7 ways you can make your home energy efficient and keep your costs low.
7 Ways To Make Your Home Energy Efficient This Winter
1. Get an energy audit
An energy audit is an assessment of your how your home is using energy. You’ll learn where your wasting energy and how you can take steps to make your home more energy efficient. Contact your local energy supplier to find out if they provide this service. Even if you have to pay a fee, you’ll get that money back once you implement the changes suggested. Well worth it in my opinion!
2. Switch to LED lights
LED lights is the easiest way to save energy. Not only do they last longer, but they also save you money in the long run. I find that replacing one room at a time makes it easier to budget for and keep track of.
3. Seal up the gaps
Look for gaps around windows, doors and vents. Seal up the gaps to ensure that the air doesn’t escape. This will prevent heat from getting out and even cool air from making it’s way in during the winter. I also like to shut my vents when I’m not in a room so that the heat gets directed to another part of the house.
4. Change your filters
Changing filters is something you have to keep up with to keep your system efficient. Simply check what your heating/cooling system requires and base your schedule off of that. A dirty filter can slow down the air flow which will cause your entire system to work harder. The harder it works the more energy it will use.
5. Purchase a programable thermostat
A programable thermostat is an excellent investment. You can pre-set the temperature for a room so that the system shuts off once it reaches your desired level. You can also pre-set your thermostat to turn on or off when you want. This will ensure that you are not wasting energy and money.
6. Use your storm windows
Storm windows are a great way to conserve energy. They give added protection by keeping the cold air out and are a simple way to make a home more energy efficient. However, if your home is already equipped with newer energy efficient windows, you won’t need to invest in storm windows.
7. Replace appliances
Do your research and plan ahead when shopping for appliances. Look for appliances with the ENERGY STAR label. These appliances will yield the best energy savings for you. Also check the rebate catalog to find out if you qualify for a rebate: http://www.pge.com/myhome/saveenergymoney/rebates/.
Making some, or all of these changes, will yield more savings down the line. Some of the direct (and indirect) benefits of being energy efficient (or using less energy) are:
- Financial: saves money.
- Productivity: saves time.
- Comfort: improves quality of life.
- Puts less strain on the grid (reduces outages).
- Puts less strain on other natural resources (like water).
- Reduces emissions that can harm the environment.
How do you keep your home energy efficient? Please share your tips below!