Easy Ways To Improve Your Energy Efficiency This Winter

14 January 2015
 Categories: , Blog


With winter in full swing, you're likely noticing that your energy bill is sky high. If you'd like some easy ways to lower your energy bill, keep reading for some useful tips.

Protect your windows.

Even with the best insulation installed, your home could still be losing a lot of heat through its vulnerable areas - the windows and doors. In fact, about 1/3 of a home's total heat loss occurs through these areas.

To protect your windows, you could replace them with double or even triple paned windows that do a much better job at keeping hot air in the house, but these replacements could be expensive.

A more affordable way to prevent heat loss through windows is to use energy-efficient drapes and window coverings that physically block hot air from escaping. Strategy is important here, as you should keep the drapes open during sunny days to capture as much energy from the sun as possible, while you should close the drapes at other times. Drapes should also be hung as close to the windows as possible, and ideally from ceiling to floor. Further, two drapes hung together (like a decorative drape combined with a heavy-duty drape hung closer to the window) could reduce heat loss even more, up to 25% if these drapes are taped to the ceilings and floors for the ultimate barrier.

Keep out drafts.

If you put your hand alongside your exterior doors, you will likely be able to feel a draft coming through. To prevent the cold air from getting in, make sure you use weather stripping to create a tighter seal around your door. Basically, if you can see any daylight between your door and its frame, air is getting through quite easily.

Many types of weather stripping are of the peel-and-stick variety and can easily be cut with a solid pair of scissors, making them quite easy to install. For more heavy-duty types or simply for more reinforcement, you can tack in the weather stripping with finish nails.

To keep air from flowing underneath a door, simply roll up an old towel and wedge it against the door for an easy solution.

Get your furnace cleaned.

Experts recommend that people get their furnace professionally inspected annually so that any parts can be cleaned or replaced for maximum efficiency. For example, filters can be cleaned of dust, thermostats can be checked for accuracy, and other components can be properly lubricated. All of these parts play significant roles in determining how much energy your furnace uses and how much heat it produces, and this maintenance can also prolong the life of your unit.

Paying the typical price of $100 to $125 is easy when considering that an improperly maintained furnace could break at any time and cost thousands of dollars to replace, not to mention the energy savings that you'll experience with a finely tuned unit.

Since the average American household spends $1500 - $2500 each year on energy bills, with 45% of that amount on heating and cooling, any improvement in energy efficiency can go a long way towards saving you money. For more information, contact A Bailey Plumbing or a similar company.