Reduce Energy Use This Fall
Changing even some of your incandescent light bulbs with high-efficiency compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs) or light emitting diodes (LEDs) saves you money. Save $7 a year per CFL or $8 a year per LED in energy savings. November 1 marks the end of daylight savings and the start of shorter days, which means more hours burning bulbs.
Open the blinds and pull back the curtains. Let the sun heat your home for free during the day. Be sure to close them again when the sun goes down so they help insulate.
Look around windows and doors for one of the biggest energy-wasters: air leaks. Inspect the caulking and seals around windows and add or replace the weather stripping around your exterior doors to prevent heat-sucking drafts. Check for leaks around outlets and switches on exterior walls too, and add easy-toinstall outlets or switch gaskets as needed.
Switch out your manual thermostat for a programmable one. Program thermostats to keep your home comfortable when you are there, and allow them to get a little colder while you are away. If you have a heat pump, choose a model designed for use with heat pumps.
Add insulation to your attic and watch your heating bill drop. Check your current insulation level by looking across the span of your attic. If the insulation is just level with or below your floor joists, you should add more – enough to bring your attic to an insulation R-value of 38, or about 10-14 inches, depending on insulation type. When adding insulation, you don’t have to use the same type that currently exists in your attic.
HVAC technicians recommend semi-annual check-ups each spring and fall to ensure your system is operating at peak performance and not costing you more money. Look at our list of preferred contractors to find an expert in your area www.jacksonemc.com/contractors. In the meantime, check your air filters. A dirty filter can increase energy costs and damage your equipment.