As winter is creeping up on us, everyone is turning on their heat, breaking out the thick blankets, and bundling up with a cup of hot chocolate to stay warm. There is nothing we can do about the temperature outside, and being comfortably warm inside isn't always an option when you are trying to keep your energy bill from skyrocketing. If you are a DIY type of person, here are four simple tips on how you can keep your home warmer during the winter months without having to dig deeper into your wallet.
1. Invest in a programmable thermostat
Programmable thermostats allow you to use settings to control your home’s temperature whenever you would like. Turning your heat down before bed is a great way to save money on your electric bill. Inhabitat.com offers great advice on picking the perfect thermostat and thermostat control tips.
2. Change your light bulbs
Changing your ordinary light bulbs to compact fluorescent light bulbs, or CFL’s, will help you reduce energy costs in your home. According to Energy Star, CFL’s produce about 75% less heat, and uses about 75% less energy than ordinary bulbs, while lasting at least six times longer. By doing this, you will have some extra wiggle room for turning up your heat on unbearably cold days. Home Depot has a 4-pack for $2.97. Click here for a chart on how to pick the best lightbulb for your home.
3. Set back the temperature on your hot water heater
No, you won’t be taking cold showers. Setting back your hot water heater’s thermostat just a few degrees will help cut costs on your energy bill. According to MACED (Mountain Association for Community Economic Development) suggests setting back your temperature just five degrees on a 52 gallon water heater will save you around thirty dollars a year.
4. Seal up your windows
Air leakage is when outside air makes its way inside the home when there are cracks and openings throughout your home. Sealing your windows during the winter is the oldest trick in the book, but it really does help you save some money on your bill by keeping out the cold air from outside. Energy.gov shares some tips for sealing air leaks in this article. Home Depot offers Window Insulator Kits from as low as $4.98.
CEO of Duluth Energy Efficiency Program (DEEP), Jodi Slick, offers some insight on how to save on your energy bill during the winter months in an interview with KUMD 103.3 FM. Take a listen here.