As the weather gets colder, you can expect to see a spike in your energy bills. The increase can be attributed to the heater running, people staying inside more and the lights being used more. While this can cause a headache, there are a few things you can do to make your home more energy efficient and save you money. David Sant, VP of Marketing for Cyprus Credit Union stops by with the following suggestions.
Add more insulation
• The better insulated your home is, the less likely you are to have cold drafts in your home.
• The more warm air you keep from escaping, the less your furnace will have to work.
• One area of emphasis should be your attic. Because heat rises, the attic is a prime spot for heat to escape.
Upgrade your windows
• During the winter months, windows are a weak point in your home when it comes to heat. By investing a little bit of money to upgrade your windows, you will save money in the long run.
• If replacing your windows is not possible, you can put an insulated film on your windows. Most local retailers will carry this product. You simply place it on your windows for the winter months and it prevents the cold from getting in.
Operate appliances efficiently
• When you use bigger appliances such as the dishwasher or the washing machine, make sure they are at full capacity.
• Whenever you are not using other appliances, make sure to unplug them so they don`t waste energy. Even when they are off, they may be using power.
Change to more efficient light bulbs.
• Replace your incandescent light bulbs with much more energy efficient LED bulbs. While the LED bulbs cost more upfront, they will save you money for years to come.
Replace your old furnace
• Efficiency of a furnace is measured by how much fuel is actually used as energy in the home. This is referred to as AFUE (annual fuel utilization efficiency)
• Old furnaces have about a 56% to 70% AFUE (according to the Department of Energy)
• Newer models have about 90% to 89.5% (according to the Department of Energy)
• There are federal tax incentives available to those who install energy efficient upgrades into their home. For more information on the incentive list, visit energy.gov
Find out more at cypruscu.com.