Stay warm AND save energy
Did you know that one-third of Americans’ energy bills go towards heating their homes? As we move into the heating season, consider the following smart tips for a better way to stay warm while saving money and lessening your impact on the environment.
•Keep your thermostat at 68°F. For every degree you lower your heat in the 60-degree to 70-degree range, you conserve 5 percent of your energy use. Like mom said, put on a sweater and don’t forget that Fido is an excellent foot warmer.
•Invest in a programmable thermostat. According to the EnergyStar, you can save as much as $180 per year on your energy bills by using a programmable thermostat. By setting your heat to a lower temperature while you’re away or sleeping, you’ll automatically see big energy savings without sacrificing comfort.
•Use the solar advantage! Open your curtains during the day, and let the sun’s energy warm up your house. Pull the curtains at night to help stop heat from escaping through the glass.
•Seal up your doors and windows so warm air can’t steal away. Warm air can escape under exterior doors. Keep a rolled-up towel pressed against the bottom of the door, dorm-room style, or use weatherstripping. Check around window and door frames for cracks or leaks and seal these up with caulk.
•Water heating can account for 14 to 25 percent of the energy consumed in your home. Turn down the temperature of your water heater to the “normal” setting (120°F). You’ll not only save energy, you’ll avoid scalding your hands.
•Cover your floors. If you have tile or hardwood floors, you can keep things cozy by laying out an area rug, especially if you have a basement or crawlspace.
•Don’t turn off those ceiling fans in winter—reverse them! Your fan is not just for summer weather. It is also an effective way to keep warm air circulating in your home. Most come equipped with a switch to reverse the direction that the blades turn. By flipping the switch and setting it on low, you can use your fan to push warm air that’s trapped up at the ceiling down to the living area.
Want to know more?
Touchstone Energy’s Together We Save website, http://www.togetherwesave.com/, has a wealth of energy efficiency information including an online home audit.
Sources: Ecolocalizer.com, Energy.gov, Togetherwesave.com