About half of your energy bills during winter in Stuart, FL, likely go to heating your home. Here are eight easy ways to reduce your utility bills without sacrificing comfort:

1. Decrease Your Hot Water Heater’s Thermostat

You can save 3–5% on your energy bills in Stuart, FL by decreasing the water heater’s thermostat. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, 120 degrees is a good temperature to choose because it keeps your water sufficiently hot without using more energy than is necessary.

2. Seal Leaks

Throughout your home, you’ll find cracks where air leaks outside of the home. Sealing these cracks makes a difference in your energy bills. Use caulk to seal small cracks and spray foam for larger gaps.

Key areas to check are the baseboards, outlets, doors, window frames and pipes. You should also seal air leaks from outside the home. Other areas to check include chimneys, furnace flues and mail slots.

3. Apply Window Film

Warm air is also lost because of the cold glass of your windows. You can minimize the warm air loss by applying window films to your windows. Window films are easy to peel off once the weather becomes hot again.

You can retain up to 55% of your home’s warmth by applying window films. There are different types of window films, so make sure the product you buy has heat reduction loss capability.

4. Insulate the Attic Door

Many homeowners know to insulate the attic, but they often don’t realize that they should insulate the attic door. Insulating the attic door helps prevent too much warm air from escaping into the attic.

5. Schedule Heating Maintenance

The end of fall is an ideal time to schedule heating maintenance, but you can also hire a company for maintenance during winter. Heating companies agree fall is the best time because it ensures your heating system is safe and ready for warming your home. Heating maintenance involves inspecting the system for safety and early signs of problems.

Annual heating maintenance provides many benefits for your heating system, including improved efficiency, lower utility bills and reduced breakdowns. You probably won’t need a major heating repair until the system is old when you stay on top of maintenance.

Remember to also change your air filter once a month, a maintenance task that’s up to the homeowner. We do change your air filter during your tune-up. However, all heating systems require a filter change every 1–3 months. Once a month is best for minimizing your energy bills and protecting the system from damage.

6. Keep the Damper Closed

If you have a fireplace, keep the damper closed when you’re not using it. Otherwise, the warm air from your heating system will escape faster. When the damper is open, it creates a draft that contributes to the transferring of warm air outside the home.

7. Reverse Your Ceiling Fan

Most ceiling fans have a switch to change the rotation of the fan blades between clockwise and counterclockwise. You can usually find the switch around the base of the fan. Some ceiling fans have a remote you can use to change the direction of the fan blades for your convenience.

In the winter, you want the fan rotating clockwise in order for it to push warm air down. Only use the fan on the low setting to prevent a draft from making you feel cold. If you have a high ceiling, setting the ceiling fan to rotate clockwise on low is even more important for keeping your utility bills low while maintaining indoor comfort.

8. Install a Smart Thermostat

Smart thermostats reduce your energy bills by adjusting the set temperature based on whether someone is at home. You can either program them the way that you want them or let them automatically detect when someone is at home. Setting the thermostat down one degree before going to bed can help you save money without you noticing a difference in your comfort.

Although Stuart, FL, doesn’t get as cold as northern states, it’s still worth implementing these energy savings tips during winter to save money on your utility bills. Contact Grimes Heating & Air Conditioning to schedule heating maintenance for ensuring your furnace or heat pump functions efficiently and safely throughout winter.

Image provided by iStock

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