Summer has moved on to Australia (lucky kangaroos) and autumn is ushering in the cooler temperatures. Now is the time to prepare for winter and get started on energy-saving tactics for your home. Don’t worry – we compiled a list of different ways to prepare your home for the winter without spending a fortune. Implement these strategies now and watch your energy costs “fall this fall.”
Install Storm Doors & Windows
Install storm doors and windows to add another layer of cold air protection and save up to 50% on energy savings.
Replace Drafty Windows
Replacing drafty windows with Energy Star certified windows can save up to 12% in energy costs.
Seal Air Leaks
Seal any air leaks around your windows, doors and walls with silicone caulking. You should also check the weather stripping around your doors and windows. If your weatherstripping is worn out, it isn’t saving you any energy and should be replaced. An often overlooked source of escaping air is your chimney damper. Ensure that it is closed when the fireplace isn’t being used.
Seal Entrances For Plumbing
Seal all the plumbing and piping entrances around sinks, bathtubs, and showers to prevent cold air from leaking in. Silicone caulking can be used to seal any gaps that you may have.
Add Foam Gaskets For Electrical Outlets & Light Switches
Add foam gaskets under electrical outlets and light switches to stop cold air from coming into the house.
Shut Doors & Close Vents
When a room isn’t in use, keep its doors and air vents closed. This will help to save energy costs in the fall and winter months.
Add a Humidifier & Plants
Adding a humidifier can add warmer air to your home. In addition to keeping your skin from drying out, the air will hold heat better. Adding household plants is another way to add moisture to the air.
Lower The Thermostat
When it’s cold outside, lower the thermostat to 68 degrees when you are home. You can save additionally by grabbing an extra quilt and lowering the thermostat to 58 degrees when you sleep and when you are away from home. Lowering the thermostat can save up to 10% on energy savings.
Lower Water Heater Thermostat
Lower your water heater’s thermostat to 120 to 125 degrees during the fall and winter to save 5 to 10% in energy costs. You can also go the extra step and add an insulation blanket to it.
Don’t Use Space Heaters
It may be tempting to add a space heater to your favorite room in the fall or winter, but you should avoid doing so. Space heaters are less energy-efficient than central heating systems and can be unsafe if left unmonitored.
Check the insulation in your attic. It should be 6 to 7 inches thick. If you’re low on insulation, have a professional top you off.