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Fall Energy Efficiency Tips For Your Home

Posted: October 7, 2019

Home efficiency rhode island

Warmer weather has lingered a bit longer than expected here in Rhode Island, but we all know the cold weather is coming – and with it will come your monthly heating bill.

If you want to keep that bill as low as possible, here are some of the best ways to do it:

No-cost efficiency tips

  1. Open the curtains/blinds – Keep curtains and blinds open during the day to absorb solar heat, then close them at night to keep that heat in.
  2. Drop the heat on your water heater thermostat – Most water heater thermostats are set for 130 to 140 degrees; 120 degrees is enough for most hot water applications in your home.
  3. Wash clothes on the cold setting – Each load of laundry you clean on the warm or hot setting adds 30+ gallons of water heating to your bill. That can add up quickly. Today’s detergents are designed to work at all temperatures.
  4. Program your thermostat – Using a programmable thermostat can cut your heating bill by as much as 10 percent, according to the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE). Keeping a sensible temperature helps, too: aim for 68 degrees for the best balance of comfort and energy efficiency.
  5. Reverse your ceiling fan – The direction of most ceiling fans can be reversed with the flip of a switch; make sure yours is set to force rising warm air back down into the room during the fall and winter.

Moderate-cost efficiency tips

  1. Weatherize – Most older homes in RI leak about the equivalent of an open window’s worth of air through leaks around doors and windows and through walls, ceilings, and other cavities. That forces your furnace or boiler to overwork to keep you comfortable, which will cost you on your energy and repair bills. Caulking and weather sealing are cheap, effective ways to minimize air leaks.
  2. Upgrade your window treatments – The color, type, and material of your window treatments can have a big impact on your energy bills, so be smart when you choose your curtains and blinds.
  3. Upgrade your showerheads and aerators – Low-flow showerheads and aerators (the screw-on tip to your faucets) can cut your hot water usage in half without any noticeable difference in water pressure or comfort.
  4. Maintain your home comfort equipment – Preventative maintenance for your oil-fired furnace, boiler, and water heater is the key to keeping them operating at peak efficiency month after month, year after year. Schedule your heating maintenance before the cold RI nights arrive!

Efficiency investments

  1. Upgrade your insulation – A one-time investment in proper insulation can cut your energy bills by up to 10 percent every year. Check out these DOE insulation tips and guidelines.
  2. Replace single pane windows – If your budget allows, consider replacing single pane windows with Energy Star™ rated models. You’ll have fewer drafts, which will take some of the pressure off your gas furnace.
  3. Replace old appliances – Most of today’s high efficiency home comfort equipment performs significantly better than older equipment – especially if that equipment hasn’t been properly maintained. If you’re replacing a 10-year-old system, your heating bill might drop 25 percent or more – enough to offset the investment in a new unit in just a few years.

Save money this fall and winter with a heating system upgrade, or a Service Plan for your heating oil-fired heating system! Contact us today to learn more, or to get a FREE, no obligation estimate on a new home heating system from Vaughn Oil!