Colder air is moving in. And from the feeling of that bitter wind, it’s moving fast. When the wind howls and the temperature drops, it’s more important than ever that home feels safe, warm and cozy.
But at what cost? If you want to enjoy the comfort of home without hemorrhaging money on your utilities, check out these 10 quick fixes to lower your winter utility bills – brought to you by Columbia CrawlSpace.
1) Lower the Thermostat
Yes, you want home to be a refuge from the cold. But did you know lowering the thermostat by even a degree or two can add up to significant savings over the colder months?
2) Favorite Sweaters and Fuzzy Socks
When setting your thermostat a little lower, set it to a place where you still feel warm and snug while wearing your favorite sweater, sweatpants and fuzzy socks. If you can add one extra layer and still feel great, you’ll lower energy bills easily.
3) Close Vents and Doors of Unused Rooms
Why bother to heat rooms no one uses? If you have a guest room without a guest staying in it, close the vents and door to that room. The same is true for storage space, an unused basement or your college kid’s room that sits empty 10 months out of the year. If you need to use the space, open the doors and vents again for the visit, then close them once your child or company is gone again.
4) Seal Drafty Spaces
Ever feel a draft when walking past windows or doors? That’s actually hot air escaping your house. Yikes! Seal those with caulk or weather stripping. And while you’re at it, seal the gaps that can leak air through electrical outlets, light fixtures and insulation gaps, especially in the attic or basement.
5) Embrace Free Solar Energy
You don’t have to install solar panels. Simply open curtains, blinds and front doors with a storm door on sunny days to take advantage of warm, solar energy.
6) Insulated Curtains
On gray, cold days and chilly nights, draw your insulated curtains closed to keep the cold air at bay and keep the solar or utility heat snuggly trapped inside.
7) Close the Fireplace When Not in Use
If you use the fireplace in the winter, close the damper when it’s not lit to prevent cold air from sneaking in. (Just remember to open it before you light the next fire!) If you know you’ll never use your fireplace again, you can have the chimney flue plugged and sealed.
8) Encapsulate your Crawl Space
Encapsulating the crawl space is another great way to lower your utility bills. Sealing the space under your house can save you up to 15% on HVAC bills.
9) Use Ceiling Fans
Think ceiling fans are only for the warm, summer months? Think again. Reverse the direction on the fan and use it to circulate the warm air that collects at the ceiling down to warm the chilly bones of you and your family.
10) Adjust the Temperature on Your Water Heater
Most people keep the temperature on their water heaters set much higher than they actually need. And since most water heaters (with the exception of tankless) are on 24/7, the water is kept constantly hot, whether it’s used or not. Lower the temperature by a few degrees for big savings that you probably won’t even notice.
Want to Know More?
Columbia CrawlSpace is committed to helping you maintain an energy efficient home, including lowering your utility bills through encapsulation. If you have questions about utility savings or other foundation issues, such as adding a dehumidifier to your crawlspace, contact Columbia CrawlSpace at 931-982-5310 or email us at [email protected] for a free inspection and estimate.