Even the warmest parts of the country are starting to feel a little bit of a chill in the air right about now. Whether your idea of cold weather is 60 degrees or 30 below zero, it’s clear that Old Man Winter is creeping around! Besides the chilly temps and snow to shovel, many of us have increasing energy bills to deal with too! It’s no wonder everyone hopes for Spring! Whether you have a brand new home or an older one, taking measures to make it more energy efficient will leave you with more room in the budget for the fun stuff – like decorating! Try some of these energy efficient ideas and see how much you can save on heating bills this winter.
The best bet is to call in professionals to insulate and weatherize your home with energy efficient windows, doors, and a great heating system. However, for many families, that’s simply not in the budget. Thankfully, there are quite a few less expensive DIY options that will help you save on heating bills.
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Control your home’s temperature with a smart thermostat.
There are many different versions and options when it comes to smart thermostats, but a programmable thermostat can really save you a bundle of cash. The key is to set the temperature a few degrees lower when you won’t notice it. For example, if you spend all day at work, you don’t need your house to be quite as warm during that time. At night, when you’re in your bed bundled up with blankets, you can lower the temperature a few degrees and not even feel it. Sure, you can get out of bed in the morning and manually turn up the heat, but a smart thermostat can be set to turn up the heat an hour before you wake up!
Another benefit to smart thermostats is that they’re smarter than you are. Many of them can now be controlled by an app, so if you’re going to be out late or one of the kids is going to be home when they normally aren’t, you can adjust the temperature from wherever in the world that you may be. Going away for the weekend? Set the thermostat a few degrees lower and program it to be nice and cozy when you walk in the door! If you’re not sure where to begin when it comes to shopping for home thermostats, you can check out my review of one here.
Weatherproof your home.
If you live in an older home, weatherproofing is especially important. Older homes are usually poorly insulated and have lots of gaps for cold air to seep in. (Some of them are actually insulated with horse hair!! You can imagine how that’s settled over the years.) Even a tiny draft in bone chilling temperatures can make your furnace have to work harder to keep up with it. Wrap your windows in shrink film and caulk any gaps around them to keep the warm air in and the cold air out. Secondly, apply weather stripping around doors to fill gaps and make a tighter door seal. While you’re at it, check those electrical outlets! Many homeowners don’t realize that outlets are one of the main places cold air gets into your home. For very little money, you can buy foam gaskets to insulate them and stop the leaks.
Change your decor to save on heating bills.
Yes, you read that right! Change it up! Insulated draperies come in every color and style under the sun and provide an additional barrier for your windows. You can even take your window treatments a step further and add some insulated blinds, too!
Another item that doubles as decor and saves energy is an electric fireplace space heater. Space heaters come in all shapes and sizes and can look great while heating your small space! If you’ve got a large home but your family generally stays in one area, there really isn’t a need to heat the entire house to 70 degrees when you’re not using it. Turn down the heat and cozy up by the “fire” with a heated throw for double the warmth and ambiance.
As you can see, it’s not difficult to save on heating bills. A little bit of savings here and there really adds up over the course of the winter!
Stay warm, my friends!
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