Traveling This Holiday Season? 5 Tips to Curb Your Utility Bills While You’re Away!
For those who are lucky enough to escape the chilly Cincinnati temps this holiday season for even a short period of time, the excitement leading up to travel can be overwhelmingly exciting. This being said, you can’t just pack up and leave your home without a bit of prior planning, and this is especially pertinent when it comes to your utility bills. Many people don’t realize how much money they can save on their utility bills while on vacation by simply spending 10 minutes to get things properly set up before leaving, and it really is just that easy.
Here are 5 tips to curb your utility bills this holiday season, each of which should only take you a few minutes.
1. Turn Down Your Thermostat
If your home is well insulated, you shouldn’t run into any trouble turning down your thermostat while you’re gone — we recommend 55 degrees. This being said, if you’ve had experience with pipes freezing in the past, we don’t recommend turning your thermostat down this low. A programmable thermostat (such as the Ecobee3) can keep temps low while you’re gone and be set to warm things up right before your return.
2. Lower/Close-up Windows
The state of your windows when you leave for vacation can certainly affect your utility bills, and this is not to be overlooked. Thermal curtains can be very effective at keeping heat inside the house, as can locking your windows to create a tight seal. If you’re noticing drafts, air sealing around the window casement can help.
3. Use Light Dimmers
When you use dimmers on your lights and keep them relatively low, you’re effectively utilizing less energy. Switching to LEDs can also help to lower your energy bill, not just while you’re away but for the entire year.
Many people don’t realize that appliances that are plugged-in are still utilizing energy within the home, regardless of whether or not they’re in use. The vast majority of appliances and electronics that you have scattered around your home do not need to be plugged in while you’re gone. Take a moment to walk around and unplug anything that fits this description.
5. Close the Damper in Your Fireplace
The last place to check before leaving is your fireplace. When you leave the damper open, it allows cold air to enter into the home and warm air to leave, which creates a veritable perfect storm for high energy bills. Closing the damper can help to keep this issue from occurring.
Take the above steps to heart, and you can expect reduced utility bills while you’re away for the holidays. If you’re concerned about your pipes freezing, consider scheduling a home energy audit with National to determine what (if any) work needs to be done regarding air sealing or insulating your home. Contact us today for more information.