The winter season brings a bunch of exciting activities and events, but it can also take a toll on your wallet. From holiday lights to staying warm throughout harsh weather, many Portland families experience high energy bills. Luckily, you can take some easy steps to reduce your expenses and achieve lower utility bills.
Our experts at Three Rivers Heating & Cooling in Portland created a list of ways you can save. Try them out and see lower utility bills this winter season.
1. Adjust your thermostat.
Program your thermostat to lower heating output at times when you’re asleep or not home. Three to five percent more energy is consumed when your furnace is set above 68 degrees, so try keeping your home at 68 degrees when you’re at home and awake, and decrease to 55-65 degrees at times when you’re away at work, out of town or sleeping to achieve lower utility bills.
2. Make sure you only wash when you have full loads.
Hold on doing laundry until you can run full loads. This will help save money on water heating, water usage and on heat required for the dryer. You don’t want to do more laundry than actually needed, right? And, keep in mind: cleaning out the lint trap after every load can save you up to $34 a year, according to PG&E.
3. Conduct a home energy audit.
A home energy audit can help you find the areas where your home is losing energy through leaks, drafts, or products and appliances that use extra energy. The assessment can show you how to save on energy expenses, including long- and short-term energy-saving options.
4. Properly seal your leaks.
From your air ducts to attics, walls and windows, there are many areas in your home that may be allowing cold air in. Simply cover drafty windows with a heavy-duty, clear plastic sheet, and add caulk or weatherstripping to seal leaks on doors and windows. Contact Three Rivers Heating & Cooling to hear more about sealing your air ducts.
5. Use LED holiday lights.
One easy way to achieve lower utility bills is to switch out your less efficient holiday lights for LED lights. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, these energy efficient lights use less energy than incandescent bulbs and can last up to 40 holiday seasons in Portland.
6. Install a high-efficiency furnace.
If you need to replace your furnace, consider an energy efficient furnace. Some systems can save hundreds of dollars a year on annual heating bills over older furnaces. Or, if you’re not quite ready for a replacement, remember to schedule a maintenance visit for your current equipment. An easy tune-up can help you achieve lower utility bills by making it easier for the system to work.
For more information on how you can reduce your utility bills this winter, give Three Rivers Heating & Cooling in Portland a call at 503-213-4433.