Keep the cold out: How to heat your home more efficiently.
It may be February, but the chilly weather is not over yet. Heating your home is one of the most costly energy expenses you’ll come by, so why not do everything you can to keep that price low? Follow these easy 5 steps to get on your way to a warmer home and lower energy bill.
1. Change your furnace filters.
When the filters for your heater become clogged, the airflow has trouble making its way through. Not only does this cause your furnace to work overtime, but some of that warm air becomes trapped instead of heating your home. By keeping an eye on this frequently forgotten object, replacing your furnace filters can save you up to 15-20% on your energy bills. Plus, routine maintenance like replacing your filters will extend the longevity of your heater.
2. Seal up the draft.
You have probably noticed a draft here or there around your home. It may be a leaky window or the back door that doesn’t seal completely. Although these small drafts may not seem like much, you would be surprised by how much they can affect the warmth of your home. We recommend using a caulk gun and inspecting all windows and electrical outlets for leaks. For doors, weather-strips are ideal to quickly and cheaply keep your entrances and exits air-tight.
3. Utilize the sun.
Have you ever noticed that even on the most frigid days, letting the sun shine on you helps your comfort level tremendously? Well, the same should apply for your home. Make it a habit during the day to keep curtains and shutters open on the south-facing windows. This is the optimal place for the sun to shine indoors and be absorbed for heat. Just remember to close those curtains and shutters when the sun sets!
4. Switch your ceiling fan direction.
This often overlooked task is so simple and simultaneously helpful. At the top of your ceiling fan there should be a switch that changes the direction the blades spin: Make sure the fan spins counter-clockwise in the winter and clockwise in the summer. The reason this helps is as the heat in your home rises, the fan will disperse the heat back down the edges of the room instead of up and away. Switching your fan direction is an easy way to keep the heat you pay for stay where you are.
5. Keep your vents out in the open.
This is another easy and free option to help your home. Give your air vents a double take to make sure there is not any furniture or textiles blocking the vent. Even if you have a couch that is not flush against the wall where the vent is, it is best to move the couch completely so it does not absorb the heat. While you are at it, grab your vacuum hose or a microfiber duster and give the vents a good clean to assure there is no blockage.
Heating your home can be a pricey endeavor, but there are steps you can take to keep your energy inside your home. Similar steps may be made for the air conditioning as well. It is all about letting your equipment do its job with zero obstructions working against you and your unit.