Winter is on its way and one of the most important things you can do when you set out to winterize your home is increase your energy efficiency.
While it’s easy to add warmth to your interiors as the seasons change, lowering your heating bill is a little more complicated.
With that in mind, we’ve rounded up some quick tips on how you can save money on your heating bill and be prepared for the winter months ahead.
Dodge the draft
One of the simplest things you can do to save money this winter is reduce draft in your home, especially important when you’re planning to sell your home.
According to the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), drafts can waste 5-30% of your energy use.
If you need some extra guidance on how to detect air leaks, there is a wealth of information online and your @properties real estate broker can help you tighten things up before your home hits the market.
The first step? Making a door stopper to keep out the draft is as simple as rolling up a towel and keeping it in front of the door.
Pick up a window insulation kit
Another inexpensive way thing to increase your energy efficiency this winter is to pick up a window insulation kit from your local hardware store.
Properly installed window plastic is essentially invisible and it does a great job of keeping the cold out. Pro Tip: don’t forget to insulate the windows in your amazing sun room, too, as drafts can travel into the house.
Install storm windows
Did you know storm windows can save you 12-33% annually in heating and cooling costs?
That’s why it’s crucial that you choose the right windows for your home, and thankfully, the DOE has you covered.
Head here for more information on choosing and installing storm windows.
Monitor your thermostat
This is one of the easiest ways to increase your energy efficiency. If you’re not home, make sure that you have the heat turned down.
Approach your thermostat with the mindset that every degree down leads to money saved. Besides, getting cozy with a comfy blanket is a great way to stay warm and save money this winter.
Lower your water heater’s temperature
You may not even think about it, but lowering the temperature of your water heater can save you 4-22% annually, according to the DOE.
Most manufacturers set the temperature of your water heater to 140ºF while most households only require them to be set around 120ºF.
Lowering the temperature also slows mineral buildup and corrosion in your water heater and pipes.
Caulk any gaps in windows and doors
If you’ve noticed a common theme throughout this piece, it’s that air leaks can waste a lot of your energy dollars.
For about $25 max, you can get all that you need to completely caulk and seal all the air leaks around your windows and doors.
For a step-by-step guide to caulking your windows and doors, head here.
Change furnace filters
Last but not least, remember to replace your furnace filter once a month during the heating season. Dirty filters restrict airflow and increase energy demand, which means a higher heating bill.
Another thing to consider is switching to a permanent filter, which would reduce waste and hassle. To make the switch you could go with an electrostatic air filter, but of course, anything that is subjected to dirt and debris regularly will need to be cleaned once a month.
When you have a home for sale, the idea of adding another project to your to-do list might seem overwhelming. These seven simple steps will help you save money and ensure your home is ready for winter.