Portland, Maine (PRWEB) September 30, 2013
Winter is just around the corner and that means that the temperature is going to drop and our energy or gas bill is about to rocket right through the roof. There is something that can be done about those mounting heating costs, though. In fact, there are a number of steps that homeowners can take to help improve the energy efficiency of their homes without giving up the level of comfort that have come to expect. Not all of those solutions have to be expensive or major overhauls of heating and ventilation systems, replacement windows, or other big projects. Of course, those things can certainly help, but there are some other basic and inexpensive things homeowners can do to keep warm and keep costs down this winter.
Easter Shore Home Improvement is a Portland, Maine building contractor that has worked with homeowners for years building new homes, home repairs, home improvement projects and home remodeling including new replacement windows, room additions and more. They pride themselves on providing quality work and an affordable rate. But, a big part of their secret to success is helping their customers find new ways to save money even while improving their homes. Here are some quick, easy, and inexpensive solutions when it comes to winterizing your home this season.
Combat drafts. If you feel a draft from around windows and doors that means you are losing heat and energy. The best solution is to replace or repair either the door or window. For a quick fix, however, you can use a towel or blanket around where the draft is to help seal it off.
Change furnace filters. These things can get clogged up with dust, pet hair and other debris floating through our home. It is a great idea to splurge a little bit here, because the more expensive filters last longer and trap more. A good furnace filter can help trap mold, bacteria and viruses, reducing the time people are down with the flu this winter, too.
Heater maintenance. Like any piece of machinery, keeping a heater tuned up is going to help it run more efficiently and last longer. It is best to schedule this early for the best availability and scheduling. You may be able to have someone from where you purchased the heater or someone from the utility company to come check out the heater. It usually includes dusting out the working areas, clearing out cobwebs, changing filters, checking for shorts and leaks and making sure everything is running properly.
Keep an eye on that thermostat. Keep the temperature around 70 degrees for ultimate comfort. It is estimated that just lowering the temperature on the thermostat by 1 degree can lower the heating cost by as much as 3 percent. Some will turn off the heat when they go off to work in the morning, but that’s not a great idea. It takes more energy to heat a home that has been without heat all day. Instead, maybe invest in a thermostat you can schedule different settings and drop the temperature by a few degrees while no one is home and have it start warming up about half an hour before. That way, it keeps everyone comfortable, but there is not that huge increase in cost to go from no heat to heater when going from some heat to fully heater.
If you are not looking to invest in or install new replacement windows or storm windows this season, invest in plastic. There is plastic sheeting you can purchase at the local hardware store to cover windows and prevent drafts and help improve energy efficiency. Most will require heating with a heat gun or hair dryer to help create the seal, but it is work the investment.