Did you get dinged pretty bad from your 2018 taxes? If so you may be looking for ways to make up for the losses. One easy way is to reduce your utility bills by energy savings.
Reducing energy use can be so easy, it’s surprising more homeowners don’t do it. You may have already instituted some of these energy-efficient practices in your home, but there are likely to be others you haven’t thought of. Read on and save.
- Close doors and windows. An HVAC system is designed to work at its peak without air leaks in your home. That means closing the doors and windows when it’s in operation. Want fresh breezes with open windows? Turn the system off.
- Seal air leaks. At least once a year, whether in spring or fall, go around your home with a lit incense stick and test these areas for air leaks: around doors and windows; recessed lighting; the attic hatch; baseboards; the exterior holes for pipes, cables and wires; and electric outlets on exterior walls. Fix leaks with weatherstripping, insulation or caulk.
- Program your thermostat, and leave it alone. Set your programmable thermostat to a desirable temperature for mornings when the household gets up, and evenings when everyone arrives home. Set energy back as much as 7-10 degrees when people are away for the day or sleeping, and save as much as 10 percent annually on your bill. Don’t raise or lower the thermostat once it’s set.
- Change the air filter regularly. A dirty air filter blocks air flow, making your system work sluggishly and costing you more in utilities.
- Close blinds and drapes in the summer. Blocking out solar radiation when you’re running the air conditioner can reduce energy use.
- Don’t close dampers. Closing dampers will not reduce energy use, but will make the HVAC system run with a pressure imbalance — leading to greater energy use.
- Check for blocked vents. Make sure vents are not blocked by carpets, drapes or furniture. Blocking vents makes the system work harder.
For more about energy savings, contact Detmer and Sons of Dayton.