Here are some tips to make your home more energy-efficient this winter.

In Upstate New York, the winters can be very harsh and their toll can not only be tough on your home but also on your wallet.  If you're a homeowner in Syracuse, Rochester, Buffalo, or Albany areas, now that the snow has begun to start flying, we have put together the top 9 ways to save money over the upcoming winter months by making your home more energy-efficient...

  1. On sunny days open up your blinds/shades to let the sunshine through your windows to help warm the rooms up; you can also spread a dark blanket out where the sun hits for extra warmth
  2. Use your ceiling fans. Homes that have great ventilation can be more energy efficient during the winter. Ceiling fans can be used for better airflow: counter-clockwise will push hot air up in the summer and clockwise will trap heat inside to keep your rooms warmer during cooler months. Turn your ceiling fan on to a low setting to bring the hot air back down.
  3. Set your thermostat to 68 degrees when using your furnace during the day.  You can set it at 60 degrees when you will be away from your house for more than 8 hours. By turning your thermostat back 10° to 15° for 8 hours, you can save 5% to 15% a year on your heating bill.
  4. When doing the laundry try to do FULL loads only. It takes about the same amount of energy to wash a half load versus a full load.
  5. Clear out the lint trap on the dryer after EACH use and make sure the dryer vent is free from debris — blockage can make the dryer less efficient.
  6. Be sure to close the damper when your fireplace is NOT being used — you can also turn heaters down as well.
  7. You can take your water temperature down a few degrees; 120 degrees or lower is best.
  8. Replace drafty windows. Not only do drafty windows make your home feel cold, but the U.S. Department of Energy also estimates that heat loss through old windows is responsible for 25 to 30% of residential heating energy use, which means replacing those drafty windows with energy-efficient ones from a company like Comfort Windows & Doors can help you lower your monthly utility bills. There are also tax credits available that you might qualify for to help you recoup some of the investment. If this isn't a possibility at the moment, here is a simple hack that can help until you can replace them. You can place foam weather stripping around your windows and doors. The weatherstripping is a temporary fix but is easy to install and easy on your bank account.
  9. If you haven't done so yet, now's the time to invest in insulation. You can lose a lot of money by “heating the outside.” Heat escapes very easily in houses without proper insulation.  You can pick up some inexpensive insulation from your local home improvement store or have someone like Comfort Windows & Doors take care of it for you. Plus there are tax credits out there that you might qualify for to help you recoup some of this investment too. 

If your home could use some more insulation or new windows or doors to make it more energy-efficient, give Comfort Windows & Doors a call or click here to set up a free estimate today.