As the weather turns colder, a lot of us are beginning to turn our eyes to find answers to keep our homes warm during the winter. But, heating your home can be a costly proposition. Here, we share 13 easy steps to keep your winter bills down.
Believe it or not, our summer is formally over. As the cooler weather begins to creep up on us, electricity use in the home increases and ultimately spikes, often ending in eye-watering energy bills.
On average, energy use rises up to 20% during the winter months, a financial weight that Aussie homeowners might neglect to factor into their monthly or quarterly budgets.
OnElectrical Contractors, one of North Brisbane and the Sunshine Coasts leading electrical companies, have presented some top tips on how to stay warm through the cooler months without the added expense.
Heating Is the Main Issue
Approximately 40% of household energy use links to heating during winter. Buy the most energy-efficient heater you can afford and simply heat the rooms that require it.
Keep the thermostat at 18-20C. Be mindful you don’t overheat your home or house. Every degree above 18-20C you program your heater totals about 10% of your heating costs.
Your Heater Needs To Be Programmed
Utilise your heater economically. Set it to turn on 20 minutes before you wake up, then set it to turn off 20 minutes before departing the house or going to bed. Use an electric blanket to heat your bed and then turn it off before you go into slumber.
Appliance Size Matters
Think about the volume of the appliances for sections of the home you want to heat up. Use small energy-efficient heaters in areas like the bathroom to save warming up the whole house alternatively.
Cust Down On Hot Water Wasting
Heating water is one of the most significant energy users in the household. Homeowners can perform minor changes to save energy, such as installing water-efficient showerheads, utilising the cold water setting on dishwashers and washing machines, and applying a timer in the shower.
Also, air sourced heat pumps are remarkably energy-efficient. They extract heat from the neighbouring air and save homeowners up to 80% of their hot water energy expenses.
Waste Not, Want Not
In winter, it’s essential to bypass using energy wherever you can. Always turn off your electric devices when they are not in use. If it’s sunny outdoors, hang out your clothes rather than placing them in the dryer.
Turn off the heater and pile on some extra covers on your bed to stay warm in the nighttime and always remember to turn your heating off before leaving the house in the A.M.
Learn To Reuse Heat
We’re going to be utilising energy throughout winter. However, there are several hacks you can use to make that energy go the additional kilometre to keep you warm.
Been baking? Leave the oven door open after you have finished using the oven, as the lingering warm air will heat the room. Want to take a shower? Don’t run the bath fan and allow the humidity to make the air hotter.
Did You Know Ceiling Fans Have a Winter Mode?
Many ceiling fans possess a switch (above the blades), enabling you to switch between summer and winter mode.
If you put the ceiling fan into winter mode, it will reverse the action of the blades and drive the warm air that is caught at the ceiling down into the room to cycle with the cool air. This will warm up your place in winter. For the best result, keep your fan on low speed.
Check The Windows
Windows lose about ten times more heat than walls, so it’s essential to make sure they are up to scratch getting into winter. Check for any gaps in your windows and frames, as these can significantly add to heat loss. Ensuring any cracks are entirely sealed could see you earn the cost back in two to three bills.
You could even contemplate double glazing your windows which is a great way to retain more heat in the home.
Use Your Curtains To Your Advantage
Speaking of windows, utilise your curtains or window coverings intelligently. Throughout the day (particularly on north-facing windows), let in the sun and close them at nighttime to seal any draughts about windows or doors.
Let The Heating Vent
Make sure any heating vents are clear and that any rugs or fittings that are in the way are moved to assure heat is circulated around the room as efficiently as practicable.
Seal Up Holes In the Walls Or Foundations
Any cracks or holes will provide precious heat to escape outside. Use weather stripper for doors and windows and gap filler for fractures in the wall.
Hire An Electrician
Hire a professional and licensed electrician to come out and check your appliances, air conditioning, wiring, lights and other electrical elements of your home. They are a great way of giving you peace of mind about the best possible ways of reducing your energy bills during winter.
Put Some Warm Clothes On
Before you set the heater on, pop on a cosy jumper or dressing gown and then see how you hold. When dressing in winter, it’s better to wear numerous thin layers. This assists in insulating you and makes it simpler to add or remove clothes depending on the temperature.
It’s also most helpful to opt for materials that hold heat, such as wool and fleece. Additionally, make sure that you keep your feet heated with socks or slippers, as this will help your whole body maintain heat.