7 Ways to Lower Your Energy Bill This Winter
Making your way through the holidays, you’re probably thinking about your energy bill. With stay-at-home protocols and working from home, you may be spending more on indoor energy use. Indoor heating can raise your bill during winter, and holiday activities or having the kids at home can mean more energy usage, too.
However, it’s easier than you might think to curb spending. Here are seven ways to lower your energy usage and see lower electricity bills this winter.
#1 Switch to LED Lights
With less daylight coming in, we tend to use more lighting this time of year. If you work indoors or have your kids schooling from home, you’re probably using a considerable amount of it. Light-emitting diodes (LEDs) are much more energy-efficient than conventional lightbulbs, using up to 75 percent less energy. Switch to LED lightbulbs to keep your home bright and cheery throughout the winter while saving money on energy.
#2 Reduce Your Washer and Dryer Use
Invest in a sturdy drying rack you can use in the winter. The air is already dry during winter, so why not take advantage? While you might still run towels through the dryer, put your clothes on the rack to hang. This can reduce your energy usage significantly because dryers eat up a lot of your power. You can reduce energy usage with your washing machine by running larger loads and using the cold water setting instead of hot.
#3 Turn Off the Ice Maker on Your Refrigerator
If you don’t use the electric ice maker on your refrigerator very much, consider disabling it! Shutting off your ice maker can reduce your refrigerator’s energy use and shave a sliver off your monthly electricity bill. Plus, you can always make ice using a simple ice mold if required.
#4 Use a Clean-Burning Stove
Fireplaces and stoves that burn recycled biomass materials, like wood chips and wood pellets, are an eco-friendly way to warm up your home. They expend less energy than cranking up your thermostat. Unlike traditional fireplaces, today’s clean-burning stoves don’t pollute your air. They can have up to 80 percent energy efficiency, which saves a lot compared to indoor unit heating.
#5 Make Your Home Airtight
Sealing off your home from the cold outdoor temperatures helps your heating bill. Walk through your home and scan every window and door for any air leaking around the frames. Use weather-stripping on any leaks you find to make the frame airtight.
After that, check for drafts where your pipes and electrical wiring come through the walls, floors, and ceilings. Use a caulk or foam sealant to plug up any holes that are letting air seep through.
#6 Clean or Change Your HVAC Filters Monthly
When HVAC filters are consistently cleaned or replaced on time, it can help reduce your energy bill.
Some HVAC filters are permanent and require regular cleaning, and others are disposable and need to be replaced after a certain period. Panel HVAC filters need to be replaced every 30 days. Pleated ones should be replaced every 3 to 4 months, and media filters last 6 months until a replacement is needed. Make sure you find out what type of HVAC filter you have in your home and how to keep it clean.
#7 Switch to Solar for Your Outdoor Lighting
Do you have outdoor lights for your front porch, driveway, or yard? One of the easiest ways to cut your monthly energy bills is to switch to outdoor solar lighting. They work by absorbing energy from the sun in the daytime, even if it’s a cloudy day. At night, they use the charge they collected to light the outside of your house. It takes nothing out of your energy usage and can significantly reduce your monthly energy cost.
Saving Money with Greener Living This Winter
When you put together as many of these energy-saving methods on this list, you can start seeing reductions in your electricity bill. Just a few small projects and investments can go a long way in bringing down your monthly energy payments.