Winter can do a number on your household budget. You can’t predict how cold the weather will get, and with that comes uncertainty about your energy budget. All you know is that it’s going to go up, and it’s an unpleasant surprise every year. You don’t have to be held hostage by the weather. There are ways to save money even when the mercury plummets without having to freeze in your own home. Check out these quick tips for saving money in the winter.
#1 Buy a Low Flow Shower Head
Low flow shower heads use less water and as a result, use less hot water, sparing your hot water tank. One thing you can do is also insulate your water tank and reduce the temperature by a couple of degrees. This will also help reduce “standby loss,” where you heat water you don’t use for hours.
#2 Do Furnace Maintenance
As the saying goes, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Every year, you should give your furnace a quick inspection and cleaning to prevent a breakdown caused by wear and tear. You may not know when to repair your furnace, but when it’s broken, it’s already too late. You can find furnace maintenance guides online that will help you through the process if you want to do it yourself, but you can also call in an expert if you suspect your furnace is having trouble.
If it’s a central air furnace that makes rumbling noises, if you feel cold air coming out of your vents when the heat should be on, or if the furnace runs in short cycles of no longer than three minutes, you should call a furnace technician. Check with your furnace company, too. If you rent your furnace, you may get access to 24/7 furnace repairs.
#3 Leave Open the Oven Door After Using
Winter also happens to have a lot of holidays that involve baking and roasting for long periods of time. If you don’t have to worry about dogs or small children, one way you can add to the heat in your home is leaving the oven door open after baking. It can spare your furnace some effort.
#4 Close Vents Not in Use
Do you have a guest room where no one is staying anytime soon? Close the vents in that room and save on heating. You can cut a couple hundred square feet off your heating footprint and save money, as that heat will simply go to other rooms instead.
#5 Insulate the Attic
Heat rises, so an improperly insulated attic can be a major cause of heat loss in your home. Insulate the attic by covering up the entry with plastic and weather stripping, or even old blankets if you have no other options.
Saving money isn’t hard if you know what to do and how to prepare for the lower temperatures, and remember, there are always small things you can do to help reduce the bills. Just remember, sometimes you need to pay upfront for savings down the road.
Like paying for attic insulation, certain appliances can cost money upfront, but they save you money down the road. Paying to add attic insulation isn’t an immediate saving. Another great example is to get a low energy water dispenser. Also, it’s important to note that Energy Star rated appliances also make a big difference!
Not only will these tricks help you save on your energy bills, they will also make your home feel more comfortable all season long.