The colder winter weather presents you with a well-deserved break from the summer heat, but not so for our HVAC systems. The freezing temperatures dictate that you have to keep your heaters running to relieve you from the coldest days. More energy consumption during winter tends to make your energy bills higher.
Fortunately, you do not have to pay high bills. In the following sections, you will discover why your energy bills could be higher during the cold months, and what you can do to reduce your energy consumption to save yourself from the shocking energy bills.
- You Spend More Time at Home
The cold winter weather makes you want to stay at home. However, staying at home means you will be using the heater, lights, TV, and other electronics at your disposal to keep you and your family warm and entertained. Winter break also means that the kids will be home from school, which translates to much more energy consumption.
- Temperatures Drops
Temperatures drop to the lowest levels in winter. The higher the difference between the outside temperature and the desired temperature inside your house, the harder your HVAC system has to work to keep your family warm, leading to higher energy consumption.
- Holiday Decorations
The festive seasons occur during the coldest time of the year. Nevertheless, the holidays are a time for a plethora of decorative lights and a host of other energy-consuming activities. This, coupled with the usual winter heating needs, escalates your energy consumption.
During winter, finding ways to keep your home warm without consuming too much energy is not on the cards for everyone. Luckily, you still have options. There are better and cheaper ways to save your energy consumption and keep your home warm. Here are some tips:
- Bundle Up
Wearing shorts and a T-shirt is not exactly ideal during winter, even when you are indoors. Put on some warm clothes and place a soft blanket on the sofa and chairs to cuddle up when relaxing in your living room.
When you keep warm this way, you can turn the temperature inside a few degrees lower and save on your energy consumption. Wearing warmer clothes will not cost you anything, and the beautiful blankets on your sofa add a spark of color to your living space.
- Use Electricity During Off-Peak Hours
Most energy companies structure their electric prices based on times of use. The options include peak, mid-peak and off-peak times. The rates charged to consumers depend on electrical energy demand. In most areas, energy costs are lower during off-peak hours. You should take advantage of the lower electricity charges for off-peak hours by taking care of most of your energy needs.
Find a live update of the times of use and hours and rates posted on your electricity provider’s website. You can also subscribe to email and text alerts from your provider, expect to be surprised by how much money you can save from this strategy.
- Turn the Heat Down
Reduce the heat when no one is home and at night when everyone is in bed. There are smart thermostats that you can program to automatically turn down the heat during the hours when you are away from home and increase the temperature back up moments before you return.
Although turning down the heat does not mean lowering the temperature to 40 degrees or below, getting it to 60 degrees can make a massive difference to your energy consumption.
- Install Weather Stripping Around Your Windows and Doors
Windows and doors are the biggest suspects of heat loss in your house. Fortunately, the problem is an affordable fix – weatherstrip around them.
Ensure to seal the tops, bottoms and sides of all windows and doors. You can also seal the bottom of your exterior doors using door shoes.
- Check Your Refrigerator’s Temperature
A refrigerator comes with different temperature settings. However, you do not require the highest cold set up to keep your food chilled and safe. It would help if you keep your refrigerator at a temperature at 2-5 degrees and the freezer at -18 degrees. Putting them below this cold setting will only be a waste of the energy you are working hard to conserve.
The Bottom Line
All the above are excellent and old-fashioned energy conservation tips that will only take you several minutes and a few dollars to implement. These tips will save you thousands of dollars, but they also help you save lots of energy using the resources you already have.