Saving money and staying warm is easy to do if you follow these tips to save money on your power bill this fall…
With the recent drop in temperature, I think it is safe to say that Fall is really here. Even if you like the cooler weather, I am sure you do not like higher utility bills. So let’s look at some ways you can save money and help you lower your heating bill.
Check Your Vents
This may sound crazy, but check all the vents in your home to see if they are open. You might think that closing vents can reduce your energy use by preventing the need to heat a room. The truth is that closing your vents will actually raise your energy costs.
Replace Your Air Filters
If you want to improve your car’s gas mileage, one of the tips you will hear is to check/change your air filter. The same is true when you want to lower your power bill. Get new air filters for your HVAC system. If the filters are clogged, it takes more energy to heat your home. You also will want to us a vacuum to clean any dust from behind the filter.
There are 2 ways to add more insulation to help you save money on your power bill. The first is pretty simple and cheap. Put on a sweater! Laugh if you want but this was something I learned from my Mom.
You can lower your thermostat a couple of degrees and still be comfortable by simply wearing socks and a sweater. The rule of thumb is that you can save about 3% on your heating bill for every degree that you lower your thermostat.
The other way to save money is adding more insulation to your home. I am sure you know that heat rises so this means the heat can escape through your ceiling. If your home doesn’t have adequate insulation, then your hard earned money may be wasted. Progress Energy recommends R-19 to R-30 insulation for ceilings.
But there are several options for attic insulation: roll on insulation, spray on insulation, or polyurethane foam. The big rolls of insulation are the best option if you want to do-it-yourself. While the spray on foam may cost more, there is no doubt it will help you save more money over time.
Look At The Windows
You can lose a lot of heat escaping through the air leaks around your windows. You can use a temporary silicone caulk to seal up your windows during the winter. In the spring, the silicone caulk will come off without damaging the paint.
If you can’t afford storm windows, you can use plastic film on those windows to stop drafts and help keep heat from escaping.
Adding or replacing worn weather stripping around your doors will make a big difference in lowering your power bills. Weatherstripping will help prevent the warm air from escaping. Weather stripping is another inexpensive, super-easy project that will make a big difference in your home’s energy bills.
Insulate Your Pipes
This is a super easy fix that most do-it-yourselfers should consider. Plus wrapping your pipes will help to prevent a frozen pipe while saving you money on energy bills. This is especially important if you have pipes in an crawlspace or basement that isn’t insulated. You can find find insulation for pipes at any hardware store.
Let the Sun In
I am sure you have seen dogs and cats curled up enjoying a nap in the sun. Well take the hint and take advantage of the free heat from the sun. Simply opening your curtains on south-facing windows can make a big difference on sunny days. By using this super easy and cheap tip, you won’t need to run your heat as high during the day.
Technology is a wonderful thing and you can save money by having a programmable thermostat installed. You will be able to set the temperature lower at night or while you are not at home. You can set the thermostat to slowly start raising the temp before you get up or come home.
Duke Energy recommends a setting of 68-70. You can save 7 to 10 percent on your heating costs for each degree below 70. I practice what I preach and we are able to run our thermostat even lower by simply wearing a sweater and opening the curtains on a sunny day.
There are several things you can do to help prevent losing heat up your chimney. The first is free and super simple. Check to make sure your chimney flue is closed. You will be surprised how many people find their flue is open and letting heat escape!
Even when the chimney flue is closed, some heat will still escape. An easy solution is to block the airflow with an inflatable chimney balloon. You can find them online or in some hardware stores.
Insulate the Attic Door
Even if you have a well-insulated attic, the attic door may not be properly insulated. This will let heat escape through the attic hatch. You want to make sure the door is insulated and it forms a good seal. Use adhesive to attach fiberglass batt insulation to the attic side of the door. And if the door won’t lie flat, use a latch bolt system to close it tight.
Saving money and staying warm is easy to do if you follow these tips to save money on your power bill this fall!