Energy Saving Tips for the Winter Months: How to Winterproof Your Home
Optimal Temperature Control
When considering how to better weatherproof your house, keep two aims in mind; minimize heat loss and minimize draft. While your walls may be well insulated, it is through inconspicuous gaps and cracks that heat escapes and cold air enters. You may feel a draft around the edges of your windows, doors, baseboards, or electrical outlets. This is a sign of air leakage, and it makes your furnace work harder to keep the temperature regulated. Processes such as weatherstripping around windows and doors to create an airtight seal can significantly improve the energy efficiency of a home. Using sealants such as caulking, spray foam or silicone seal strips on baseboards and electrical outlets can also mitigate air leakage.
Some other solutions to better control the temperature of your house include:
- Monitor your thermostat – Lowering your thermostat by 5 to 7 degrees while you sleep or are not at home can save you up to 10 percent of your annual heating costs.
- Use curtains – Allowing the sunshine to beam into your home is a free form of natural heat that should be taken advantage of to garner energy savings. However, during hours when there is no sun, covering your windows with blinds or curtains can help to keep heat in.
- Adjust the temperature of your water heater – The Department of Energy outlines a step-by-step guide on how to lower the temperature on your water heater from the standard 140 degrees Fahrenheit to 120 degrees Fahrenheit. Doing so can result in significant savings and offers other benefits such as slower mineral build up and reduces chances of scalding.
- Bundle up – Layering clothing and/or blankets is a super simple way of keeping warm and lowering energy costs.
- Chimneys offer an easy pathway for downdrafts. Investing in a chimney cap can stop the warmth of your fire from escaping.
- Empty rooms – Close the vents and doors to spaces that aren’t used often, such as a guest room, to prevent the furnace from heating up unnecessary spaces.
- Air circulation – Many people don’t know that their ceiling fan has a reverse setting from the standard counterclockwise rotation which allows it to move clockwise, creating an updraft and circulating the warm air that rises to the top.
Heat Saving Investments in Your Home
Sometimes spending money upfront can lead to long term savings. If your appliances do not have an energy star symbol, you may be losing money due to inefficient equipment. The following is a list of investments that will ultimately help to lower your utility bill:
- Insulated curtains
- Space heaters for small, enclosed spaces
- Furnace filters
- Smart thermostats
- Getting paid to go green – Take advantage of government incentives and rebates by being more environmentally-conscious. It also makes your home more energy efficient, which means you spend less money on utility bills.
Furnace Maintenance Pays Off!
Ensuring that your furnace is well maintained can be the difference between a high energy bill and an affordable one. This involves monitoring your furnace and changing your filter regularly. For further assurance, have an HVAC technician perform a furnace tune up to check that everything is operating smoothly.
Is your furnace out of date? If your furnace is more than 20 years old, it may be time for a new one. Older furnaces use up a significant amount of energy to keep the house warm which in turn can produce a hefty bill.
For heating solutions, maintenance, or general inquiries, call us at 610-438-9300 or fill out our online form to get in touch with an HVAC specialist. We’ll be happy to provide more energy saving tips for your home – not just for the winter, but all year round!