After a brutally hot summer that likely saw your energy bills hit historic heights, you’re probably ready for a break. But if predicted forecasts are to be believed, the relief will be short-lived because much of the country is supposed to be in for a cold, wet winter.
This means you’re going to want to adopt some strategies that will help increase your home energy conservation this winter. Here are ten energy saving tips for winter that will help you keep your energy bills tolerable.
Dress for Warmth
Turning up the thermostat is one way to get warmer, but that can come at a cost. Instead, start dressing for warmth so you don’t need to rely exclusively on your furnace. Put on a sweater, a thick pair of socks and a cozy pair of slippers, and you’ll be amazed at how much warmer you feel.
Keep the Fridge Stocked
An empty refrigerator wastes a lot more energy than one that’s full because it must work harder to keep items cold. So, this winter, shop at your local bulk warehouse and keep the fridge stocked with food. You’ll always have food in the house, and you’ll save energy at the same time.
Use the Right Sized Stovetop Ring for the Pan Your Using
If you’re using a small pan to make a dish, use the small stovetop ring to heat it, not the large one. When you use a large ring to heat a small pan, the bulk of the heat being produced never touches the pan, so it winds up being wasted. The reverse also applies. Don’t use a small ring to heat a large pan because it will take much longer for the pan to heat up and for your food to cook.
Wash Clothes in Cold Water
Washing clothes in cold water gets them just as clean as using hot water. The difference is you’ll save a ton of energy by doing so because 80% to 90% of a washing machine’s energy use comes from heating the water.
Hang Heavy Drapes on the Windows
If your windows are drafty, then you can help block some of that cold air transfer by hanging heavy insulated drapes over your windows. Keep the drapes open on sunny days to allow the space to be heated by the sun, but then close them at sundown to help keep the warmth inside.
Use a Space Heater
If you spend most of your day or night in just one room of your home, like a home office during the day or the living room in the evening, then you can save a lot of energy by turning the house furnace off and using a space heater to heat only the room you’re using the most.
Use Exhaust Fans Sparingly
The exhaust fans in your bathroom and kitchen are designed to expel air from the home. While you need to use them when you’re showering or boiling water to help keep moisture under control, you don’t want to leave them on, or they’ll continue pulling warm air out of the home and cause the furnace to turn on more frequently. If you need to run the exhaust fan, do so sparingly and make sure you turn it off when you’re done.
Replace Your Mercury Thermostat
Replace your old mercury thermostat with a newer programmable model, and you’ll enjoy greater control over your heating and your energy use. For even greater control, use a network-connected SMART thermostat that you can control using your phone from anywhere you have an Internet connection.
Find Air Leaks Around Your House and Fix Them
A home can have dozens of air leaks where warm air escapes and cold air enters. Search your home for air leaks and fix them when you find them, so your home can retain as much heat as possible this winter.
Get Your HVAC System Inspected
If your HVAC system isn’t running at peak performance, then you can expect to pay a lot more for your heat this winter. Before the real cold sets in, have a professional inspect your HVAC system to ensure that everything is working properly.
Energy Saving Tips for Winter: Replacing Drafty Windows
Thompson Creek’s custom replacement windows can help you improve your home’s beauty and energy efficiency. All our replacement windows are made using the highest-quality materials and they’re Energy Star certified, so you can rest easy knowing that your windows are designed to keep your home more comfortable in every season. To learn more, contact Thompson Creek and get a free estimate for your new windows today.