10 Home Efficiency Tips For Winter

home energy tips pennsylvaniaWinter is almost here – and when temperatures drop, your heating bills will rise. The question is how much will they rise?

The answer to that question, in part, depends on you! If you want to keep your bills as low as possible, here are 10 tips for improving efficiency in your Berks, Montgomery, or Chester county home:

  1. Start with the windows – Leave your curtains and blinds open during the day to absorb heat from the sun, then close them at night to keep that heat in. Choosing better window treatments can help, too.
  2. Reverse your ceiling fans – Ceiling fans in the winter? You bet! Just make your blades are pushing rising warm air back down and into your room (most ceiling fans have a reversal switch to change their spin; see your owner’s manual for details).
  3. Clear the way for baseboards and vents – Airflow is an overlooked part of home comfort and efficiency – make sure the heat you paid for can circulate and keep you warm.
  4. Mind your air filters – A clogged filter will make your heating system overwork to do its job, which means higher bills for you; check it once a month during winter, changing (or cleaning it, depending on the model) when needed.
  5. Weatherize – Add caulk and weather stripping around windows, doors and other openings to keep the cold air out and the warm air in. Consider adding insulation to attics and crawl spaces, too – it’s one of the best energy efficiency investments you can make.
  6. Program your thermostat – Turning the heat down for eight hours a day can reduce your annual heating bill by as much as 10 percent, according to the U.S. Department of Energy (D.O.E.), and the easiest way to do that is with a programmable thermostat. Your energy savings in the first year of use will often be enough to offset the cost of installation.
  7. Change your water heater thermostat – Most water heater thermostats are set higher than needed to get the job done in your taps and appliances. The D.O.E. recommends a temperature setting of 120 degrees to balance efficiency and comfort.
  8. Install low-flow shower heads and aerators – Low-flow shower heads and aerators (the screw-on tips on your faucets) can cut your hot water usage in half without affecting your comfort or water pressure.
  9. Service your home comfort equipment – Professional maintenance is the key to keeping any equipment running efficiency and reliably: not only will it lower your energy bills, it will also prolong the life of your equipment, prevent potentially costly repairs, and even keep your equipment warrantees in force. The best way to get your heating equipment maintained? Sign up for an Oehlert Bros. Service Plan.
  10. Consider sensible upgrades – Even a well-maintained 15-year-old furnace or boiler can’t compete with a modern replacement when it comes to keeping you warm for less money. In fact, you could save as much as 30 percent on your annual fuel costs when swap your older heating system for new high efficiency heating equipment – enough to offset the cost of a new heating unit in just a few years.

Save money this winter with high efficiency heating system upgrades and expert heating system service from Oehlert Bros. Contact us today to learn how!