Winter is just around the corner and that can mean higher energy costs from keeping your home toasty and warm. Did you know that there are some simple steps that you can take to help reduce your home’s winter energy bills?
Here I will share some simple inexpensive and even some free ways to help reduce your winter energy bills this year.
Open Your Curtains
Open your curtains during the day and allow the natural sunlight to help warm your home. Just make sure that you close them once the sun goes down so that you don’t lose any of the warmth that you gained during the day.
Reverse Your Ceiling Fans
During the summer months, your ceiling fans should be turning counter-clockwise, but you need to reverse them to turn clockwise for the winter months. They should run on their lowest setting, and this will pull cool air up towards the ceiling and push the warmer air from around the ceiling down to where you can feel it.
Turn the Heat Down
Turn the heat down by a degree or two at a time until you are uncomfortably chilled, and then return the temperature to the lowest temperature where you were comfortable. Every degree you can keep the thermostat turned down is saving you money so keep that in mind but don’t make yourself uncomfortable or sick by keeping it too cool.
If you aren’t quite warm enough, instead of turning up the thermostat consider adding an extra layer of clothing instead. Cold feet? Put a pair of fuzzy socks over your regular ones. Or grab a blanket or robe and snuggle up on the couch. Shop my favorite inexpensive throw blankets.
Seal Leaks and Cracks
If you see any leaks or cracks around your windows and doors, or you can feel cold air coming in by them use caulk or sealing foam to fill them in and help prevent drafts. You can do this both inside and outside of your home.
Another option would be to use a weatherproofing kit like this one to cover drafty windows during the colder months.
Use Residual Heat
Some of the appliances in our home generate heat when they are being used, and that residual heat can be used to help keep your home warm. Your dryer and your oven will both have residual heat and you can use it in your home by simply leaving the doors on them open for a few minutes after using them. Taking a hot shower or bath can also produce residual heat. After you are done bathing leave the bathroom door open and let that hot, steamy air warm your home.
Install Door Sweeps
Install door sweeps to your exterior doors to help keep cold drafts from coming in under the doors. Door sweeps are inexpensive and easy to install, and they can keep cold air out of your warm home.
Get a Programmable Thermostat
Get a programmable thermostat and have it lower the temperature seven or eight degrees for the eight hours (or more) per day when no one is home. There is no need to waste energy keeping your home warm if no one is going to be there to enjoy it. By getting a programmable thermostat you can set it once and not have to worry about it again. Your home will be warm by the time everyone returns home, but you won’t be wasting energy when they aren’t.
These are just a few of the simple and free or inexpensive ways that you can help to reduce your winter energy costs this year. You might be surprised at what a big difference some small changes can make to your bills. What are your favorite ways to reduce your winter energy costs at home?