Save Money: Winter Energy Saving Tips
Save Money with these Winter Energy Saving Tips
With winter upon us, you may want to consider different ways to save money to take that frosty bite out of utility bills. Winter can be harsh in many of the cities GROWTH serves, making it stressful and potentially costly to navigate the first part of the new year. We’ve prepared some easy winter energy saving tips to help you keep more money in your pocket and give you peace of mind this season!
Focus on the temperature:
Did you know that you can save an average of 1 to 3 percent on your bill by lowering your thermostat just a couple degrees? You don’t have to flash-freeze your home, but slowly reducing the temperature to a level you still feel comfortable with can go along way toward reducing your heating bill. Or install a programmable thermostat that automatically lowers the heat when you’re not at home or at night while you snooze away.
Checkup on your utilities:
There are free energy checkups and audits available to homeowners. They tend to last about an hour and can identify issues that may affect your energy usage such as gaps and cracks, leaky faucets, inefficient lightbulbs and old showerheads—all things you’ll want remedied before a winter storm. (For additional energy saving ideas and living greener and cleaner, check out our blog here.)
Homes typically have tiny cracks and gaps which can cause the same loss of energy and comfort as leaving a window open year-round. Try using caulk or weather stripping around window and door frames. It is also important to check for gaps where pipes enter your home and seal them with expanding foam insulation. If you have an attic or basement, you may want to make sure those are insulated as well, especially your walls and crawl spaces. You don’t want a family of racoons or squirrels taking over your house!
Swap out lightbulbs:
Now would be a good time to switch to LED bulbs if you haven’t already done so. LED lightbulbs use about 75 percent less energy and last about 25 times longer than regular bulbs. What a light saver! (We couldn’t resist!)
Reset your hot water heater:
Hot water is the second largest use of heat in many homes. Setting the water heater to 120 degrees will save you about 10 percent on your energy bill. If you plan on going out of town, it’s also a good idea to turn it down even further. Some water heaters have an away or vacation setting.
Turn off phantom energy users:
Anything with glowing lights or a digital display is continuously using unnecessary energy, even when it’s not on. It’s best to unplug these types of items when you’re not using them (scanner, printer, paper shredders and coffee makers).
Check out winter landscaping:
If you’re big on landscaping your yard, strategically planting your trees and shrubs can reduce winter winds and help save money on energy costs. It’s important to choose vegetation with low crowns, such as dense evergreen shrubs and trees, and cluster them to block the cold. Boxwoods and junipers make great hedges. Plus, it adds great winter color and scenery for winter curb appeal.
Buy in bulk:
Buying in bulk is a great way to save money. Not only does it save you a trip back to the store every few weeks, it also ends up saving money down the road. Get a membership, if needed, and try shopping at bulk stores for items you use regularly.
Preparing for the winter months is not always easy, but we hope this list helps you and your family save time and money. Although the weather outside may be frightful, a cozy, efficient home where you can enjoy time with family is so delightful. We hope our top 8 tips for saving money during the winter helps planning out the months ahead!
Stack, Katlin. “20 Excellent Ways to Spend Less Money during the Winter.” Lifehack, Lifehack, 23 Dec. 2014, https://www.lifehack.org/articles/money/20-excellent-ways-spend-less-money-during-the-winter.html.