Winter tends to linger in the Midwest. It is sometimes as if the cold seeps into your bones, spurring many to boost their thermostats to keep their home feeling warm and cozy.
If you are a new zero-entry homeowner, you may be concerned about energy costs during these chilly months. If you want to save on your heating bill but can’t do a lot of home repair or upgrades on your own, the following energy-saving tips can be useful.
1. Seal your doors
The winter cold can easily slide in under doors. Inspect the seal underneath every door in your home and replace them as needed. For good measure, put a mat under each door to trap warm air inside—and don’t forget the door that leads to your garage if it’s attached to your home.
Quilted curtains can also be used to cover windows to make your home feel warmer while keeping your thermostat low. During the day, keep open blinds on windows in direct sunlight to naturally heat your home.
2. Rearrange your furniture
If you’re sure your furnace is working properly but still feel a chill, try moving any furniture (couches, rugs, etc.) that are blocking vents, since this prevents warm air from circulating appropriately.
3. Check your lightbulbs
While you're rearranging, check out the light bulbs in each room and swap them out with LEDs. LED bulbs use 75% less energy and last 25 times longer than traditional incandescent light bulbs, which can save you a lot on your electricity bill during the long winter season.
4. Pay attention to your fans
If you didn’t already know, heat rises. In order to push warm air hovering above your head back down, you can adjust your fan blades so they turn clockwise during the winter months and counter-clockwise in the summertime.
The warm air that rises to your ceilings could also be escaping through your bathroom exhaust fan or the fan above your stove. Keep your home warm and cozy by using these exhaust fans sparingly and turning them off when they aren’t needed.
5. Avoid heating your home more than necessary to keep it comfortable
Turning down the temperature in your home will definitely save you money, but it could result in a cooler home than desired. Another option to keep your home efficiently warm is to invest in a programmable thermostat. If you’re away from home for eight hours during the day, programming your thermostat to dial back 7–10º during this time can cut your heating costs by up to 10 percent per year! Smart thermostats allow you to control the temperature of your home from your smartphone, making it easy to adjust from anywhere.