80°F in the winter feels great until you pay the power bill. The following tips will help you live comfortably & save money by optimizing your heating & cooling.
Adjust temperature to save energy
For every 2 degrees of adjustment you save 500 lbs of emissions a year and a realize a considerable savings on your power bill.
During the day, most people find they can be very comfortable at a thermostat setting of around 68°F in the winter and 75-78°F in the summer. For health reasons some people may need higher settings in the winter or lower in the summer.
At night, consider adjusting the temperature to 55° in the winter and 80° in the summer. Add extra blankets to the bed in winter and try a bedside fan in the summer to make sleeping more comfortable. It has been scientifically proven that you will have a better quality of sleep when you are cool. Winter renewable energy is hard to obtain, so cooler night temperatures are especially good for you and the environment. If you find that you have trouble sleeping, back off the adjustment a bit until you sleep soundly.
To find the best setting for you, you don’t have to do a big change all at once. Try adjusting your thermostat one or two degrees a day. After a week you are likely to hardly notice the change, than if you made the jump from 80°F to 68°F in one winter day.
Adjust temperature with programmable thermostats
By adjusting your thermostat 10-15 degrees for 8 hours a day, you can save up to 10% of more of your heating or cooling costs.
Regular thermostats can allow you to change temperatures to a desired setting. Try leaving a note by your car keys to remind you to adjust the thermostat before leaving each morning.
Programmable thermostats, on the other hand, can enable you to set a certain temperature level and may even change during the day.
A “Smart Thermostat” can learn your schedule and change the temperature at night or when you’re away and cool or warm up your house before you wake up or get home. You can control the temperatures remotely from wherever you are, and record energy usage and even safety of your household. There are rebate programs available if you use one of these devices.
Stop air leaks around doors and windows
Sealing your windows and doors, as well as choosing heavy, natural fabric window coverings will not only save you money on your heating bill, but will also reduce the risk of your home catching fire during a firestorm.
Caulking Windows and Exterior Doors – Caulking along the outside of the frame of a window or door is important in sealing from water infiltration which is absolutely necessary in preventing water damage. A good rule of thumb is to apply a bead of caulk anywhere two dissimilar materials meet… brick and wood; wood and glass; wood and metal, etc.
Caulking Windows – Check for window drafts by carefully holding a stick of incense up to each frame and watch the smoke to see if there is a leak. (Be sure to remove all curtains and drapes first to avoid a fire.) Then use caulking or weather-stripping to seal the cracks. Another method is to work with another person on the outside, have that person blow a hair dryer around the outside of each window while you hold a lighted candle inside. If the candle flickers or goes out, you need to caulk or weather strip around the frame. Do not seal the exterior window weep holes shut, as these allow any water or moisture that does get into the window area to get out. Never use oil-based caulk to seal the seams of an insulating window. The oils in the caulk can degrade the bond around glass allowing moisture to seep into the house. The most obvious symptom of this problem is seeing your windows fog up during the summer.
Caulking Doors – All doors (entries, garage doors, and pet entries) need special attention. Problems are common where the door frame meets the threshold. A thin bead of caulk can prevent water damage here. Also caulk the areas where trim meets the door frame or siding. Don’t try to caulk the entire door jamb before going back and smoothing it out, do that as you go. Caulking starts to skin over quite quickly and then you can’t smooth it out properly.
Window Coverings – Natural and heavy fabrics are best for windows. Not only do they provide additional insulation during the coldest hours at night, but they are also more resilient to fire than synthetic fabrics. In the event of a fire outside, windows are very vulnerable to breakage. Once this happens, if you have synthetic window covering, you are very likely to lose your home.
This link will explain the many different types to sealants that can be used, so you can select what works for you. https://www.bhg.com/home-improvement/windows/window-repair/how-to-weatherstrip-windows/
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