This winter, you can keep your home warm and energy-efficient at the same time, saving the environment as well as your frozen toes.
Duke Energy field supervisor Jim Morton recommended Cincinnatians who plan to use their heating systems over the winter seal up small openings in their homes -- the crack between the door and the floor, for instance -- with weather strips that prevent cold from entering and heat from escaping. If more heat stays in your home, you won’t have to run your heating system as hot or as often.
Insulation is also a good idea for both your basement and -- get this -- your water heater. If the latter is old, you can wrap a blanket around it to keep the water hot.
Morton recommended a few other quick fixes for winter energy efficiency:
- Circulate your fan counterclockwise. Heat rises, so you want your fan to be pushing warmer air back down into your home.
- When possible, use your microwave or toaster oven more often. These use less energy than a full-size oven.
- Use cold water for laundry. It uses less energy and saves hot water for places you really need it, like the shower.