Winter is on its way which means that the colder weather is just around the corner. We tend to use more electricity in the winter months to keep our homes warm and comfortable. Here are some things you can do to reduce winter energy costs.
- Turning down the thermostat during the day when you aren’t home as well as at night will help reduce winter energy costs. There is no point in heating an empty house or heating the whole house at night when you are under warm covers. Using programmable thermostats allow you to set temperatures at pre-set times. BC Hydro claims that lowering your thermostat by 2 degrees will save you 5% on your heating bill. Lowering it 5 degrees could save 10%.
- Only heat the rooms you use by closing the vents in the rooms that are not in use. Rooms, such as a guest room, which may be rarely used may not need constant heat.
- We often get sunny days during the winter months, so opening the blinds during the day when the sun is shining allows the heat in. Closing the blinds when the sun goes down acts to insulate the room and keeps the heat from escaping.
- Instead of turning up the heat, put on a cozy sweater, warm socks and keep throw blankets on your couch for easy access and comfort. Keeping the temperature a few degrees cooler will help reduce winter energy costs.
- Use weather-stripping or caulking to seal air leaks around doors and windows. Cracks or gaps allow the heat to escape and the cold air to come into your home. This will help reduce winter energy costs.
- Turn off un-necessary lighting. A motion sensor switch could be a good option to avoid forgetting to turn the lights off in closets and pantries.
- Changing the direction of your ceiling fan to clockwise will force the warmer air at the ceiling down to where you can benefit from it, rather than turning up the thermostat.
- 90% of power used to energize an incandescent light bulb is wasted in the heat it produces. That means that only 10% of the power is used to produce light. Replacing incandescent bulbs with the correct LED bulbs will make a difference on your electrical bill.
Even choosing to implement a few of the above points will help reduce winter energy costs and provide savings on your utility bill.