Feb 3, 2012
It’s that time of year again! Oversized sweaters, hot coffee, and a BIG energy bill. By the time your bill rolls around, many homeowners are in shock at the amount of money they have spent just to keep their home warm during the winter months. But it doesn’t have to be that way. Here are some energy-saving tips from JD’s A/C to avoid spending all your extra Christmas cash to keep the lights on.
Turn down the heat
According to the U.S. Department of Energy, you can reduce your heating bill by 1% just by lowering the thermostat for a period of at least 8 hours. This is ideal when you and your family are gone to work, school, or are sleeping. Grab those warm jammies and a light blanket to keep yourself comfortable if you are home during this time.
Install a ‘Smart Thermostat’
We know, life can get busy. Especially around the holidays, who has time to think about their thermostat as we rush out the door for work, to drop off children, or run errands. A programmable thermostat can help with that. These ‘Smart Thermostats’ have the ability to control the indoor temperature around the clock, hands-free. Installing a Smart Thermostat can save you a lot of time, and money in the long run.
Reduce drafts in the home
According to the Department of Energy, you can save up to 30% on your bills just by addressing areas known to be drafty in your home. This includes doors, corners, chimneys, pipes, wiring, windows, vents, and anywhere else air could potentially leak inside from the exterior. You can get a successful seal by using caulk and/or weather stripping in needed areas.
Change your furnace filter
A dirty furnace filter could be a factor in a high energy bill, and many homeowners don’t even know it. When your furnace system has a dirty filter, airflow becomes restricted, causing your heating system to work harder when it doesn’t really need to be.
Reverse your ceiling fans
Reverse my fans? Yes! On the top of your ceiling fan near the lights, you will see a small button for you to push back or forth. More times than not, your ceiling fan is set in Summer mode spinning in a counterclockwise rotation. By changing the direction of airflow to clockwise can save as much as 10% off of your monthly heating bill.
Remember: Counterclockwise is for cool breezes and clockwise is for warm circulation.
Turn your water heater down
Standard water heater thermostats are set at 140 degrees Fahrenheit. However, it’s recommended that you tone it down to 120 degrees instead. This can take your energy bill down by 6-10%.
Install a heat pump
Today’s heat pump can reduce your electricity use for heating by approximately 50% compared to electric resistance heating.
Keep up with general maintenance
Maintenance is how we keep anything looking or running as it should, and your home’s heating system is no different. Your furnace will need regular tune-ups, and filter changes to keep it running efficiently and effectively. If you haven’t looked at your heating system since last year, it may be time for an inspection or a tune-up.
Make sure your ducts are sealed
An average of 20% of heated air within a home can escape through the ductwork in your house, as stated by The Energy Department. It’s important to have your ducts professionally evaluated to see if there are any other forms of care that could improve efficiency. By doing this, you can save an estimated $100-$120 annually.
Heat only where you meet
Purchase a small space heater to warm parts of the home you are in. By keeping the heat in one spot, vs running your furnace to heat rooms nobody is in, you could potentially save money on your electricity bill.
Close your chimney
But don’t forget to re-open this for Santa in a few short weeks! By closing the ‘damper’ in the chimney you can prevent outside air from coming in, and heated air from going out. This alone takes care of a major draft point in your home and can reduce the cost of your heating bill.
If you feel that you could benefit from having your furnace serviced, give JD’s a call. We will send one of our licensed technicians out to inspect your system and answer any questions that you may have.