Show Notes: Saving Energy and Fall Clean Up
The end of day light savings is the start of cocooning for the winter. Have you pulled out the warm blankets for the cooling nights? It’s time to make sure your home heating system is more energy efficient and working properly. And, while you are it, make sure to clean the air with an air purifier.
Guide To Energy-Efficient Home Heating Systems
Heating the home in winter is one of the biggest household expenses. According to the EPA, 42% of the energy we use at home is for heating. While energy costs have risen, the improved energy efficiency of today’s heating systems offset those energy prices.
Think about the following six questions before you decide on the best and most efficient heating system for your home.
How to choose the most energy-efficient home heating system
What’s the climate like?
A colder climate might require a larger, highly efficient system that can heat your home appropriately while minimizing heating costs over the long winter.
A portable heater or smaller zoned system may be better in temperate climates where heating is only needed on colder days.
How much of your home or apartment do you actually need to heat?
Do you want to pay to heat an entire home or just a couple of select rooms? Choose a system with vents that can be closed or adjusted so you can choose to heat rooms you use most. A thermostat is also essential to efficiency to keep the system running only when it needs to.
What types of installation will the most energy-efficient home heating systems need?
The two main heating systems are forced air or radiant. While radiant systems are often more efficient, they can be hard to install in an existing home.
How much space do you have available for your heating system?
A large furnace may not be practical if you have a small home or apartment. Outdoor units like heat pumps may not be possible without a yard or outdoor area for the unit.
What fuel is available and how much will it cost to heat your home?
Common fuel options include natural gas, heating oil, electricity or propane, all which can vary widely in price. Consider the lifetime cost of running an electric heating system versus one powered by a petroleum-based fuel.
Can I afford a renewable energy heating system?
A solar or geothermal unit may have a big initial price tag, but there are plenty of rebates and incentives to consider. The lower monthly costs and the increase in your home’s value may also make the initial investment worth it. Many renewable energy companies can help you decide if the system and the payback period is right for your situation.
Fall Clean Home Air Tip
Purchase an indoor air purifier .This purifier removes pet dander, dust mites, viruses and odors that are common in the home. Also, with fall DIY home improvement season in full swing, air purifiers can remove paint VOCs and construction dust. Set them up in the kitchen, bathroom, bedroom, or wherever it’s needed most at home.
Things To Do When Daylight Saving Time Ends
You’re probably looking forward to that extra hour of sleep you get each fall when we turn the clocks back. But a little more shut-eye (and the threat of being an hour early to work on Monday) aren’t the only things the end of Daylight Saving Time should signal. Use this time to take care of important biannual tasks around your home.
Change the batteries in your smoke detectors.
You’ve likely heard this one before, but it’s worth repeating. Take the time to make sure your smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors are in working order and have fresh batteries. Flames can consume a home in as little as five minutes, and the risk of dying in a fire is cut in half in homes with working smoke alarms.
Flip your mattress.
To make sure your mattress wears evenly, you should flip it every six months. Got a pillowtop? Just rotate it instead of turning it over.
Clean your fridge’s coils.
To keep your unit running efficiently, use your vacuum’s wand to suck away layers of dirt and dust.
Vacuum out your dryer’s vent and ducts.
Lint lodged in the vent pipes, the space behind the dryer, and ducts outside your home is often the cause of dryer fires. Your vacuum’s crevice tool can help you get the job done.
Replace or clean filters around your house.
You should inspect the filters in your heating and air-conditioning units to make your systems are still running well, but also check the water filter in your fridge and HEPA filter in your vacuum.
Refrigerator Water Filters
Water filters need to be replaced every six months to effectively minimize contaminants in your drinking water.
Check your emergency kit.
If you’ve depleted your supply of flashlight batteries, bandage, and other just-in-case items over the past six months, use this time to restock.