It’s that time of year again. Cooler air, richer colors, and a reminder for us to turn the heat up a couple of degrees on the thermostat. Fall and winter are on the way, so we’ve put together some tips to help you keep and also lower your electric bill.
Open the Curtains During the Day
The sun is a great natural energy source to help you save money on your heating bill. Opening your curtains during daylight allows the sun’s warmth and light to pass into your home. This alone helps your home stay warm without turning up the thermostat.
However, for this to work, you must remember to close curtains or blinds as the sun goes down. You don’t want to lose the heat or deal with uncomfortable drafts.
Consider Investing in a Smart Thermostat
Control your home’s heating and cooling system using a smart thermostat connected to the internet. The benefit of a smart thermostat is that you can use your phone or laptop to control them remotely from anywhere in the world. Meaning you can raise the temperature a few degrees from the grocery store so your home is nice and toasty when you get back.
Smart thermostats also allow you to set up “smart” schedules for your HVAC system so that it only runs when necessary and uses less energy when possible. You can even set different temperatures for different times or days of the week if desired.
Make Sure to use Appliances During Off-Peak Hours
The smart way to use power when electricity is expensive is to use less during peak demand hours. Unplugging appliances and electronics will also help reduce household consumption.
Find the off-peak hours by checking your local energy company’s website and try using your appliances during those times if possible. Or, if the sun’s shining, why not try line-drying your laundry?
Cover Concrete and Hardwood Floors with Rugs
To keep your feet warm and reduce your energy bill, add rugs to your home. Rugs provide another layer of insulation for cold floors, which helps keep the heat inside your home instead of escaping through the wooden floorboards.
Place rugs over concrete or hardwood floors in hallways, living rooms, and kitchens. Not only will they lower electric bills, but they’ll also brighten up your home.
Dress for the Season with Cozy Sweaters
The key to dressing for winter is layering. The more pieces you have on, the warmer you’ll be. Try not to make your outer layer too bulky or thick — it’s always better to have two thin layers than one thick one. Go for long-sleeved shirts and sweaters instead of t-shirts; adding or removing a layer is easier if you get too warm.
Get Your Air Filter Changed
Filters become clogged with dust and other particles that prevent them from doing their job correctly. If they become too dirty, your HVAC system needs to work harder to push out warm air. As a result, this can make your utility bills higher than they need be!
At Moore Home Services, we like to tell Santa Rosa homeowners to change their air filter at least twice per year. Once before the spring and once before the fall. This will ensure your filter is clean and ready for the peak HVAC seasons.
Book in Regular Furnace Maintenance
It’s important to schedule regular furnace maintenance to keep your heating and cooling system running efficiently. In short, an efficient system leads to lower electric bills. By keeping up with regular maintenance, you also help avoid more serious problems.
Check you Have no Phantom Loads
Phantom loads are electrical devices that use power even when they’re turned off or not being used. If you’re looking for ways to save on electric bills, phantom loads are one area where you can make a big difference with little time and effort. All you need to do is unplug devices when not using them – easy!
Seal Air Leaks Around Windows
Seal the gaps around windows and doors. You can buy foam strips at a hardware store or use caulking to fill the cracks. Check around doors and windows for gaps where they meet walls and floors. Equally, seal air gaps along any pipes that run through walls.
Try a Cold Wash for the Laundry
Washing machines use less electricity when they’re not heating up water. 90% of the energy a washing machine uses is heating up the water. By using cold water, you save paying for that extra energy. Cold water also preserves your clothes for longer – better for your clothes, washer, and, most importantly, your bank balance.
Reset Your Water Heater
There are two ways to lower your water heating costs. Either adjust the temperature setting on your water heater or install an energy-efficient tankless or solar hot water system.
Setting your hot water heater to 120 degrees Fahrenheit will save money by reducing the electricity needed to heat your water.
Stay warm this fall and winter. Contact one of our North Bay HVAC experts to learn more about heating your home on a budget.