How To: Save Energy This Winter

December 13, 2013

We all want to make sure we’re making the most of our heating systems in the winter, but there are things that can interfere with keeping our homes comfortable. This guide will ensure that your home warm and energy efficient during the winter months.

1. Adjust the temperature

When you’re at home, set the thermostat as low as it is comfortable for you and your family. At night or when you leave the house, set your thermostat 10 to 15 degrees cooler than you normally would during the winter months. Doing so can save you around 10% annually on your heating and cooling bills.

2. Be sure to capitalize on the sun’s heat during the day

During the day, be sure to open your curtains and blinds to let sunlight in. The sun will naturally warm the inside of your home.

3. Use curtains for drafty windows

Use heavy, tight-fitting curtains to protect from drafts. If it is still drafty around your windows, you can buy a heavy duty, clear plastic sheet to prevent cold air from getting in.

4. Lower your water heating costs

If you turn down your water heater to 120 degrees F, you can save money on your energy bills. Water heating may account for up to 25% of the energy used in your home.

5. Using your fireplace

First, if you don’t use your fireplace, be sure to plug and seal your chimney flue. Next, if you don’t have a fire burning, keep the damper closed.

When you are using your fireplace, it’s recommended that you open the dampers at the bottom of the fireplace (if you have them) or slightly open a window in the room. It’s also beneficial to close all of the doors in the room where the fireplace is located in order to ensure that the heat from the rest of the house doesn’t escape.

6. Holiday lighting costs

It’s beneficial to use LED lighting in order to save energy during holiday seasons. We recommend looking into Energy Star-qualified holiday lights.

7. Have an energy audit

If you haven’t already, have your home’s energy efficiency assessed. An energy audit will let you know important information such as how much of your heat is escaping through cracks in your doors and windows.

Information for this post came from energy.gov. If you are interested in a free estimate or would like to know how Lensis Builders, Inc. can assess your home’s energy efficiency this winter, give us a call at 703-367-8999 or fill out a short contact form by clicking here.

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