“January and February are historically the harshest months for New Yorkers and a time when saving energy is the last thing on your mind,” said Michael Petri, owner of Petri Plumbing & Heating. “Many people are unaware that you can have an energy efficient home and be comfortable during these cold months. With National Cut Your Energy Costs Day falling on January 10, now is the perfect time to think about how you can cut back on your energy costs.”
The Petri Plumbing & Heating team has three tips to help you save money and the environment, even in the dead of winter.
- Install a programmable thermostat and use it. Programmable thermostats have been around for quite some time, and with “smart” thermostats becoming the norm, energy saving has never been easier. Upgrading your thermostat to a newer model ensures accurate temperature readings, allows remote operation, and helps ensure your climate control system is being used efficiently.
- Use ceiling fans to circulate warm air downwards. It seems counter-intuitive to have a fan running in the winter, but since heat rises, it can help circulate warm air throughout your home. By turning your ceiling fan on a low speed, warm air doesn’t just sit at the ceiling. Many ceiling fans have a small switch on them that allows you to change the direction the blades turn in. Blades that spin in a clockwise direction pull air down. With more air circulation, you can bump your thermostat down a degree or two to save some energy.
- Make sure your furnace and filters are clean and unblocked. One of the biggest energy hogs during the winter is a blocked or clogged filter. Dirty furnaces aren’t just inefficient, as they can also pose a fire hazard. Clean furnace filters trap dirt and allergens, and help your furnace run more efficiently. With windows shut for months on end in the winter, filters tend to get dirty quicker. Petri recommends changing your furnace filter monthly during the winter. However, if your home has a boiler system you’re off the hook for changing your filters.
“If you take advantage of these tips, you can easily transform your home into a comfortable, energy efficient space this winter,” Petri said. “It may be wise to even consider installing a new boiler, as modern ones can run at 98.5 percent efficiency compared to 80 percent or less for older models. And if you’re interested in taking your energy efficiency even further in 2018, we can provide in-home assessments of where you can improve your efficiency, which not only is better for our environment, but also saves you money in the long run.”