We think it’s safe to assume that during the winter months here in North Georgia, most homeowners want nothing more than to turn their thermostats up to the highest possible setting to keep cold drafts out. Unfortunately, that is not a good idea. Constantly setting the thermostat to a high temperature during wintertime will cause a significant spike in energy bills. The U.S. Department of Energy’s website offers several tips on how you can program your thermostat to save energy and money when temperatures are low outside, which we’d like to share with you.
To achieve optimal comfort indoors, it is recommended for homeowners to set their thermostats between 68 to 72 degrees while there are people inside the home. This temperature range is not too warm or cool, and can warm up the home just enough so that everyone is comfortable regardless of the type of clothing they are wearing, although we wouldn’t suggest you keep your wool coats on.
Night Time and Away Temperature
When nobody is home for an extended amount of time and at night, it is ideal to lower the temperature to 58 to 62 degrees. When everyone is asleep and less active, there is no need for the heating and cooling system to waste energy when it is not needed as much. That temperature setting will also help keep the pipes in the home from freezing when the temperatures outside drop and no one is home.
Now, since older furnaces and heat pumps take longer to heat up the inside of a home, it can cause the home to feel colder than it really is since the appliance is taking more time to heat things up. To improve how fast the furnace works and to maintain the warm temperature indoors, it is best to replace all older appliances including the furnace with energy saving appliances. Here at Home Comfort Solutions, we can help make recommendations that work with your needs.
Invest in a digital thermostat to make setting and maintaining temperatures simple. Digital thermostats make it possible for homeowners to set their thermostats in advance and not have to worry about setting them again until the season changes. Make sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions and install the digital thermostat in an area that is convenient for you to reach and away from all drafts, sunlight, furniture, doorways, and windows.
When setting a digital thermostat, keep in mind the times everyone is awake and sleep. Consider programming the device so that it lowers and raises the temperatures shortly before everyone gets up, goes to sleep, or leaves the house. If the home is going to be empty for three hours or more, do not forget to set thermostat to a lower temperature to save energy and money while you are away.
Ways to Save Money on Energy Costs in the Winter
While setting the thermostat to the right temperatures can improve the comfort of one’s home, there are other ways to achieve this:
-Wear warmer clothing and consider setting the temperature to lower than 72 degrees to see more savings on energy bills.
-Inspect and regularly replace filters.
-Get an inspection and furnace tune up before the arrival of winter to get the furnace ready for the season.
-Inspect the home for drafts and leaks. Seal up any cracks, holes or gaps in the home’s entryways, walls, and foundation to prevent thermal energy from escaping.
-Use weather stripping on doors and windows that are used frequently.
-Caulk or seal the windows and any unused exterior doors.
-Set the water tank temperature to 120 degrees to reduce thermal energy costs.
-Open the curtains or blinds to let the sunlight in to help heat the home.
-Check all pipes and faucets for leaks. Insulate the pipes by covering them with a blanket.
Just remember that taking these extra steps can not only help keep your home comfortable but can also help you save money and energy, which is what we here at Home Comfort Solutions want for your family.
For more information about ideal temperature settings or a programmable thermostat, call Home Comfort Solution at 678-546-0433.