2018 is finally upon us, and it’s time to start planning the next 12 months. New Year's Resolutions usually consist of eating better, exercising more, and saving more money.
While we can’t help with getting you to eat more vegetables, we certainly can help you save money this year. Drastically lower your energy bill using these tried and tested methods.
Seal Air Leaks in Your Home’s Duct System
Energy losses from poorly sealed air ducts can cost you up to 30% more on your bill. The good news is most of these leaks are very easy to fix if you can spot them. Check for spaces and holes around where the ducts join together.
If you see spaces, air is probably leaking out, and they will need to be sealed. This is a project you can do yourself with some heat-approved tape from your local hardware store. Butyl, foil and duct mastic tapes are best for sealing spaces in ducts, try to avoid masking tape or any other non-heat-approved tapes.
Be sure that connections at registers and vents are well sealed where they meet the walls, floors, and ceilings. Spaces here also contribute to energy losses. Disconnected ductwork could also be the problem, and you may need to take some time and search your house. When in doubt, contact a heating/cooling professional to do a proper check, and seal anything up at the same time. This is a pay now, save later situation.
Using Curtains and Drapes Helps Control the Temperature in Your Home
The type of window coverings you have can either help or hinder you this year. Poorly insulated windows can attribute to 10% of your energy losses, which adds up over time.
Placing curtains or drapes over your windows creates a seal, and either traps air in, or keeps it out, depending on the time of year. Be sure to get drapes that fall to the floor or window sill, and purchase two instead of one.
This will help trap the air better. Certain types of fabrics will hold in air better than others. Head over to your local fabric store and check out the options. This will make your home more stylish AND energy efficient.
Install a Programmable Thermostat
Programmable thermostats are a great new way to save on your energy bill this year. You won’t have to worry anymore about adjusting the temperature, or waking up to a cold house in the morning. This little guy will do all that for you.
Adjusting the thermostat 5-10 degrees throughout the day can save you about 15% on your heating and cooling bill, and all you have to do is press a few buttons once. Programmable thermostats are inexpensive, ranging from 25-100 dollars, and can be found at any local hardware store. They are compatible with most heating/cooling systems, apart from electric baseboard heating systems, which require a ‘line voltage’ system.
Visit a hardware store near you, speak to an associate, and find out how straightforward it is to get one of these little guys installed in your home. And let the savings begin. Now you can finally say you knocked one item off the resolution list, and save some money on your energy bills. Congratulations, you are among the few! Happy New Year, and happy savings, this year and every year.