RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - As those AC units die down and the heaters get going, make sure your home is ready for winter.
It starts with unplugging those laptops when you’re done using them. Small appliances suck up energy by being plugged in.
“It’s time to slay the vampires by turning those devices off or unplugging them when they’re not in use,” said Andy Farmer with Virginia Energy Sense, the State Corporation Commission’s consumer education program.
His top tip? Check your light switches on the outer walls and see if you are losing energy.
“There were gaps, and the first winter we were here we could feel cool air coming through," he said. He sprayed foam behind them to seal the outlets.
Farmer says to check for leaks at any place in your home.
“Particularly in places where two building materials come together, such as siding and brick. You want to look around places where utilities come into the house - a pipe or water faucet, there might be a gap there,” said Farmer.
Check windows for any gaps and the sweep underneath your door. You may need to add weather stripping.
Have your heating and air conditioning unit checked out by a professional, and remember to change your filters often in the winter.
“At this time of year when your indoors a lot you can get dust buildup on those filters. The dust inhibits airflow and it creates resistance and it makes your heating and air conditioning system work much harder,” adds Farmer.
Open the curtains and let the sunlight in during the day to warm your house and shut them up at night. Also, turn your ceiling fans on in reverse - meaning clockwise - to help circulate the warmer air.
Lowering the temperature on your hot water tank by 10 degrees will save you about $9 a month. Trim one minute off your shower and that’s about $33 back in your pocket each year.
Coldwater is cheaper than hot water. Washing clothes in cold water is another $47 a year in savings.
And finally, one more way to save this winter? Turn that thermostat down to 68 degrees at night. Grab some extra blankets, and you’ll thank us when the power bill arrives.
You can find a whole list of energy-saving and money-saving tips, HERE.
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