Is Winter Stealing Money From Your Wallet?

Here's some money saving tips
to save on energy bills

Probably in October, homeowners throughout the country began resenting that often costly decision to turn the furnace on and raise the dial on the thermostat. When arrives in several regions it means chilly to freezing temperatures with, frost on roofs, and the threatening higher-than-normal energy bills. Homeowners should be looking at the multitude of ways to take control over the amount of energy their homes use up, which directly affects their monthly energy bills along with the budget. So, stop throwing your hard earned dollars out the window; and make your home more energy-efficient and geared up to handle the cold of winter.

For observant homeowners, many tell tale signs exist that your home might not be using energy as efficient as it could. Jay Gregg, marketing director at Pillar To Post, a foremost home inspection provider of services for real estate professionals and homebuyers in the Canada and the U.S., says there's an overabundance of red flags in addition just the gas and electricity bills of the home.. "Look for drafts. Feelings of drafts as you pass by a window or door, or draperies moving are signs you not making efficient use of energy," says Gregg.

For homeowners with concerns over the energy their home is consuming, particularly in winter, proper maintenance can make it easier stay on top of things. A great starting place is the furnace. Regular cleaning and maintenance can make certain that itís operating properly, and consequently, efficient, says Gregg. Never neglect the annual service, as opposed to taking care of on an emergency-only basis. Furnace filters need to be be replaced or cleaned every month or two, an undertaking many often neglect. In terms of taking control of the heat stream of your home, it always begins at the furnace.

After you've taken care of the furnace, go through your house, looking for unfinished areas including crawl spaces and basements. These are typically the most drafty areas in a home. Another huge warning sign of draft overindulgence are spider webs. If you see an overabundance of spider webs within any particular location, probably there is a draft. Find it and get rid of it.

In fact, poorly installed windows are typically the main cause of losing energy and high heat and cooling bills. The U.S. Department of Energy, says winterizing windows of the home can immediately start saving as much as 10 percent on utility bills, while replacing wasteful windows can save as much as 25 percent. Gregg recommends inspecting all the external weather stripping installed on the home's exterior windows. Immediately replace the ones where cracks are found to ensure that no heating or cooling is leaking through the weather striping. Another alternative is caulking that homeowners can make use use of to seal any gaps or leaks they find in their windows. The energy saved will more than bring a return for just a few do it yourself hours.

"A simple way to tell when there is a window leak problem is by running a burning an incense stick around a window seal," says Gregg. "If smoke begins blowing towards your face, then youíre getting too much draft which would show you there's an air leakage."

Aside from windows and drafts, Also there are many smaller chores you can take care of to help the cause for your homeís heating and cooling efficiency. Gregg says homeowners also should:

  • Lower the thermostat setting: Installing thermostat that's programmable is a good way to save some of your hard earned dollars. After its installed, lower temperatures 7 to 9 degrees when the family is not at home or sleeping . Homeowners will see as much as two percent savings for every degree reduced.
  • Use cold water: While doing the laundry, switch over to cold water. If at all possible, consider acquiring a washing machine that's energy-efficient. By cutting down on water usage, you'll save more. Remember that using hot water also takes fuel also. Take note of amount of water you use while washing dishes and bathing and make an effort to cut down usage.
  • Close the damper: If the home has a wood burning chimney or stove, be sure the damper is closed. Leaving it open position can result in lots of cold air getting into your home thereby wasting lots of heat.
  • Window Coverings: On warm sunny days, heat your home naturally using the sun's power. Remember to open the window coverings of any windows tin your home that face south and let the sunshine in. Your home will take advantage of natural heat instead of keeping it out.
  • Wrap pipes: Cover exposed pipes with appropriate insulation as a way to prevent both loss of heat loss and from freezing. Potential homebuyers should also be thinking about conserving energy when shopping for their new home.
By considering consumption of heating, cooling now, homeowners can later get a big return their savings. Donít be bashful about asking questions of the energy use of a home. The home's age itself can offer clues as to how effective its insulation is. Ask to see the annual energy bills along with the elecctrical use of the home. Find out how old furnace is and that of cooling systems, Also always have the heating and air-conditioning systems looked at by an experienced home inspector.

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