Preparing for an event or occurrence is much easier before it happens rather that waiting until it’s happening. Last winter was rough and this one has the potential to be just as bad — or worse. And, we all know that fuel costs keep rising. While temperatures are still warm, here are a few tips to help you prepare and increase your winter energy savings.
- Have your heating equipment checked by a trusted heating professional. There is no substitute for getting your equipment checked now to head off problems in the middle of winter.
- Make sure all windows and doors are weatherstripped or caulked. Massive air infiltration can occur through small openings.
- Check your fireplace damper. When it’s being used, the damper should be open. Make sure it is closed tightly when not in use.
- Install a new air filter or make sure your re-usable filter is clean.
- If you don’t already have one, consider a programmable thermostat. Set-back temperatures in your home can boost your energy savings.
- Make sure your insulation levels are what they should be for our New York climate. If you’re unsure, contact a heating and air technician.
- Make sure ducts are sealed and have no leaks. Leaking ducts can waste up to 30 percent of your heating costs.
- Clean your gutters and make sure they drain freely to prevent ice damming.
- Seal up any pipe or wire holes that go into or out of your home. Use caulk or foam insulation to seal those areas. Also, purchase insulation for electrical outlets and switches. These are common points for energy loss.
- Shut off your central air conditioning breaker. This can drain electrical energy and cost you even while not in use. Also, get a breathable cover for the outside unit to keep debris away.
Other small things such as reversing your ceiling fan switch to the winter setting can also increase energy savings.
At T.F. O’Brien Cooling and Heating, we can help you prepare for the winter ahead. Contact us with any questions about increasing your cold-weather energy savings. We’re always happy to help.
Our goal is to help educate our customers about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about energy saving tips and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.Photo courtesy of www.shutterstock.com.