With winter quickly approaching and Christmas lists growing longer, people all over the country are coming into the time of year where money is scarce. Heating bills start to skyrocket and electricity to power those Christmas lights is not cheap. But the season does not have to be completely stressful. If you have a home warranty, for one, peace of mind will attend you in case of essential appliance failure, namely your heater. And also, there are several ways to save heating and electric energy bills this winter in order to put money back towards the holidays where it belongs.
Turn It Down
Someone who turns their thermostat down to 10 or 15 degrees during the night can save 10 percent of their heating costs per year. Since the heat will only be down for about eight hours, it will not be enough time to freeze the house but will keep energy from being wasted. Purchasing a heavy blanket for the bed can keep someone plenty warm during the night and during the day the thermostat can be readjusted.
Fill In the Gaps
Filling in leaks and gaps can make a huge difference during the winter. Place a towel at the bottom of any front or back doors to block air leaks. Also, when a fireplace is not in use, make sure the chimney is plugged up so heat cannot escape the house. Any cracks or leaks around windows should be filled as well.
If someone has a small apartment, or a home where only one or two rooms are used daily, small space heaters can be used to heat specific rooms instead of heating the entire house. Heating a house every day can get expensive, but by using a small heater and closing doors inside the rooms that are used most often, it can be just as comfortable as central heating.
Consume Less Electricity
No one should have to sacrifice holiday lights in order to save on the electric bill, but using LED lights can make a huge dent. LED lighting requires about 75 percent less electricity than iridescent lighting. They also do not heat up as much which results in less energy being sucked up as well. Unplugging the lights every night before going to bed is also a good habit that saves electricity.
Unplug the Unneeded
Things such as garage freezers are unnecessary during the colder months of winter. If there is snow on the ground and night temperatures is below freezing, food objects can be kept out in the garage without being harmed. Unplug the freezer at night and then replug it during the day to save extra electricity.
Dim the Lights
The holiday season is the time for candles, fireplaces and mood lighting. So turn off the lights to save electricity by lighting some candles or using the fireplace. Not only does this get the family in the holiday spirit, fires can keep the house warmer which helps save on heating as well.
Added moisture in the air tends to hold heat a lot better. Since winter is a dryer season, having a humidifier inside the house can create an almost humid feeling which will make the air warmer.
Cut the Showers Short
During the winter months, it is usually a good idea to try and make showers a few minutes shorter than usual. Because it is colder, people often do not sweat as much, so cutting back on showers will not be as big of a problem as it tends to be during the summer. Cut one shower a week and it can make a huge difference. Also, starting to take baths rather than showers can cut back on water costs as well.
The winter months do not have to be stressful for the wallet. Creating a winter home protection plan can make all the difference. Every little step can save energy as well as money during the holidays.
Written by David Glenn. David is a home improvement expert. He occasionally freelance writes about real estate tips, home maintenance, and DIY home repair.