Low cost ways to stay warm this winter

Winter is here. As the temperatures drop, you may begin to worry about your energy cost and how efficiently you are heating your home. Here are a few low-cost steps you can take to heat your home and stay warm this winter.

  • Use a programmable thermostat. When you are home and awake set the thermostat as low as is comfortable. When you are away or asleep, turn the thermostat back 10° - 15°. is can save around 10 percent a year on heating and cooling. Each degree below 68° can save 3 percent.
  • Seal air leaks around utility cut-throughs, gaps around chimneys, recessed lighting in ceilings and unfinished spaces behind cupboards and closets. Add caulk or weather stripping to seal air leaks from leaky windows and doors.
  • Change dirty HVAC Filters. When an air filter is clogged, more energy is used to make the heating work and can increase your energy consumption. When you consistently change your air filter, you can save 5 to 15 percent on your utilities.
  • Reversing ceiling fan blades to run clockwise in the winter will help trap heat inside to keep your rooms warmer during cooler months. Turn the ceiling fan on a low setting to gently push hot air back down.
  • Open curtains on your south-facing windows during the day to allow sunlight to naturally heat your home, and close them at night to reduce the chill you may feel from cold windows.
  • Keep your replace damper closed unless are is burning. Keeping the damper open is like keeping a window wide open during the winter; it allows warm air to go right up to the chimney.
  • Rugs can add a layer of insulation to the door. it helps to trap cool air underneath and keep it from seeping up and cooling the room.