With all the crazy snow Cache Valley has received this January and cooler temperatures expected this weekend, there is a big thought on everybody’s mind: stay warm. Hurrying as fast as we can to get the driveway cleared, run in from our cars, thaw our children after fun in the snow. But what makes a beautiful white winter tends to make heating bills skyrocket. Here are a few ways to not break the bank while trying to stay warm.
1- Lower your water heater temperature. Most water heaters heat the water up to 140 degrees Fahrenheit as their recommended setting. Truthfully, you can have it set at 120 and never notice the difference.
2- Close vents in unused rooms so you’re not heating unnecessary areas.
3- Use the sun. While it may be cold outside, opening the south facing curtains will help heat up your home. Make sure to close the curtains at dusk. And invest in some heavy insulating curtains to keep the cold out at night.
4- After you cook dinner leave the oven open. All that wonderful heat is just being wasted in your oven after you’re done cooking! Just make sure no small children will be near it while it’s too hot.
5- Lower your thermostat up to 10 degrees while you sleep. Invest in some flannel sheets or a heating blanket and you won’t even notice.
6- Turn ceiling fans on low. Having your ceiling fans on will help rotate hot air through the room. If you can, make the fan rotate backwards to push the air down from the ceiling.
7- Use bubble wrap as temporary insulation to block drafts around windows and door jams.
8- Only use exhaust fans when absolutely necessary. Exhaust fans in the kitchen and bathrooms pull all that precious warm air out of the house and into the cold.
9- Insulate around outlets where the cold is seeping in through the outside walls. Ask a professional how to do this correctly so you don’t create a fire hazard. You can purchase outlet seals at any home improvement store.
10- Lastly, if you decide to purchase any new appliances, windows, insulation etc. to lower your bill and you buy an Energy Star labeled product, there are federal and state tax credits that will reimburse you 10%.