Tis theseason for lower temperatures and that means higher heating bills. If you'relooking for ways to cut back on energy costs here are a few tips to help you doit:
- Use the sunshine, it's free.
Pull backthe drapes and open the blinds during the day. Sunshine provides naturalwarmth. At night, close the window coverings to combat drafts and prevent heatfrom radiating out through the windows.
- Replace the furnace air filter.
A furnace'sair filter should be replaced at least every six months. Dusty environments mayrequire more frequent replacement. A clean filter will improve air flow to theentire house.
- Check for vent blockage.
Make surefurniture, rugs and curtains are not obstructing air flow at vents andregisters. Also check to be sure the register dampers are open.
- Schedule professional air duct cleaning.
Clean ductshelp the air to flow more freely. Air duct cleaning should happen every fewyears or more frequently if home occupants have allergies.
- Replace worn weatherstripping around doors and windows.
Asignificant amount of heat can escape from even a small crack.
- Check attics and other locations for air loss and add insulation asneeded.
Homeimprovement stores sell several types of insulation. Remember that all atticsshould be vented to the outside. Be sure not to block the outdoor vents.
- Cover windows with clear, plastic film.
Window-insulatingkits usually cost fewer than 20 dollars at hardware stores and according toheating experts they can have a significant impact on the room temperature.
- Inspect ductwork for air leaks and seal with foil duct tape.
Be sure touse aluminum foil-type duct tape, not the common, gray duct tape, on ductwork.
- Keep fireplaces closed if not in use.
Glass doorsand the flue should always be kept closed when the fireplace is not in use.
- Lower the thermostat temperature and dress in layers.
Bundle upin sweaters, pants and socks and you won't need to set the heat as high to feelcomfortable in your home.