Winters are long, cold, and dark. For many, it is also an expensive time of year. You may find that you spend a lot more time indoors, using more electricity and turning up the thermostat to stay warm. What’s even worse is that winter holidays might force you to travel and spend more than you would normally.
Thankfully, there are some ways you can save a few bucks. Here’s an easy list of ways that you can save money this winter.
Pest-proof the exterior
Pest problems are common in the winter when pests want to escape the cold. They come crawling in through the gaps they find in the walls, then multiply and get out of control. Pest-proofing now will prevent the costs and stresses of an infestation.
Examine the walls of your home very closely and look for entry points. Cracks will let in bugs, while any gap that can fit a pencil can fit a mouse. Use caulking and meshes so that rodents can’t chew their way through. Doing a little preventative maintenance can go a long way.
If you’re currently dealing with pests, reach out to Pest Control Norwood or another professional near you.
Lower the thermostat
Lowering the temperature in the house is easier said than done, but it’s an easy way to save a little on your heating bills. Bring the temperature down to around 68F/21C or lower and switch to comfy socks. You can also lower the temperature further for when you’re asleep and when you’re not home.
If you go out a lot, consider getting a programmable thermostat so that it works with your schedule. You can set it to lower the temperature during work hours and late at night.
Fix drafts in the windows and doors
Drafts waste the warm air in your home, forcing you to spend more on your heating bills. Check for gaps underneath your doors to the outside. If you can see light, or any gap at all, add some weatherstripping. Weatherstripping is great for blocking out the cold, the snow, and even mice.
If you’re not sure about your windows, try holding a lit candle while standing in front of them. If the flame flickers, there is probably a draft. Add locks and weatherstripping to your windows to improve the seal. You can also seal cracks in their frames with caulking and add heavy drapes into the mix. Close the curtains at night to preserve warmth.
Use appliances during off-peak hours
Doing laundry, washing the dishes, and using the oven take a lot of energy. Check your energy provider’s pricing schedule and see which hours cost the least. Then, plan to use your large appliances during off-peak hours. In most places, it costs less to use energy during evenings and weekends.
Prep early for the holidays
Take advantage of fall sales and get started on your holiday shopping. Rushing at the last minute will encourage you to make impulse purchases and spend more than you would have with a little more time to spare.
Find something on sale at the grocery store? Grab it now and stick it in the freezer. You can also save yourself some time by cooking things ahead of time and freezing them for later. Cakes, cookie dough, casseroles, and soups freeze beautifully.
Maintain your HVAC system
Did you know that heating and cooling costs may account for as much as 70% of your energy bill? Make sure you change the filter in your HVAC system so that it doesn’t work harder than it needs to. Filters get clogged with dust over time, which makes it harder for the system to circulate the air.
If it’s been a long time since you’ve had it serviced, consider having an HVAC technician inspect your machine and give it a good clean.