With some predicting an approximately 3% spike in energy prices, many individuals are left worrying about the impact on his or her home’s climate. Whether heating a house in the winter or cooling it in summer, it’s the HVAC system to which many turn to regulate the temperature. It’s an effective tool for making a home more comfortable, but its impact on the electric bill is another matter. If you are burdened by rising costs, try these low-cost hacks to reduce reliance on the HVAC unit.
Much of a home’s heat gain or loss is the result of air leaks around movable components. Installing door and window weather stripping is an efficient way at sealing a house and preventing treated air from escaping. These foam strips form a barrier that also helps prevent moisture from seeping in. Weather stripping should be checked every spring and fall and replaced as necessary.
If you’ve ever used an emergency foil blanket, you’ve witnessed how effectively foil can trap heat. It’s that same principle that makes it so effective at keeping a house warm. Just tack up strips of aluminum foil along the wall behind a radiator. Instead of escaping outside through the wall, the heat will now bounce off the foil and be pushed into the home.
The simple act of opening and closing curtains can have a big impact on interior temperature. On sunny days, keep curtains open for the natural heat that sunlight provides. Once the sun sets, however, quickly close them to keep warm air inside.
Understanding your ceiling fan is another no-cost way to heat or cool a home. In winter, set the blades to turn clockwise to help redistribute the rising warm air throughout a room. Be sure to reverse the motion to counterclockwise in the warm weather months so the fan can push air downward and create a cooling effect.
Whether you like it hot or cold, you don’t always have to pay to be comfortable. Try these tips to keep energy costs down.