Although it might take a small investment of money and time, it’s possible to lower energy bills quickly and easily before the heating season is in full swing. Besides cutting your overhead, these tips increase home comfort and enjoyment through the holidays and beyond.
- Switch to LED holiday lights. These lights are widely available, affordable, and use a fraction of the electricity that older strings of lights use. The LED bulbs emit far less heat, which also makes them a safer alternative should you use them next to flammable trees or decorations.
- Have your heating system serviced. Not only does professional cleaning and adjusting save energy dollars, it also promotes safety. Heat pumps also need maintenance for winter heating to maintain their efficiency.
- Use a programmable thermostat. A programmable thermostat remembers to turn down the heat at night and when you’re away. You can set it to heat your home just before you return home or awaken.
- Have a professional change the air filter for the furnace or heat pump regularly. Checking and changing the air filter cuts heating costs and extends the life of the furnace or heat pump.
- Flush the water heater. This appliance uses nearly 20 percent of your home’s energy, and a clean tank heats water faster. Lowering the water temperature to 120 degrees F will also lower energy bills and prevents scalding injuries. Mineral solids are also less likely to form at the bottom, which increases the lifetime of a storage tank water heater.
- Seal air leaks. Cracks, crevices, and gaps in your home’s envelope drive up energy costs and for the most part, are easy to seal. Check around the exterior window and door frames, look under sinks for gaps around pipes, and the exterior walls. Caulk seals small cracks effectively, and expanding foam will stop air infiltration around pipes. Fresh weatherstripping stops drafts around exterior doors.
Having lower energy bills not only benefits you financially, it also lightens the load on the environment and your home’s major appliances. If you’d like to learn more, contact Roth Home & Plumbing, proudly serving Portland-area homeowners.