Prepare For Cold Temperatures & Storms

SIMPLEST & MOST COST EFFECTIVE WAYS TO STAY WARM TO REDUCE HEATING COST

Dangerously cold temperatures are predicted for most of the country. Here are a few tips to stay warm and safe this winter.

When to adjust your thermostat to save you the most money?

You can easily save energy in the winter by setting the thermostat to 68°F while you're awake and setting it lower while you're asleep or away from home. By turning your thermostat back 6° to 10° for 8 hours, you can save 5% to 15% a year on your heating bill. A typical house hold is not home during the day on week days. Lowering the temperature during the day can save you money. Night time is also the perfect time to lower your thermostat. As we sleep, our bodies naturally require less heat. Lowering the temperature in your home while you're asleep or when you are away from home can have a significant impact on your overall heating cost.

Although thermostats can be adjusted manually, programmable thermostats will avoid any discomfort by returning temperatures to normal before you wake or return home.

Quick Tips:

Open the curtains on your south-facing windows - Open windows during winter days to allow heat into your home. Close your window coverings when the sun goes down to keep the heat inside.

Put on a winter sweater and warm socks - Keep throw blankets on your couch.

Adjust the thermostat at night - Consider investing in a warm comforter for your bed and keeping your home/apartment cooler when you sleep.

Keep your furnace clean and unblocked - Keeping your furnace and vents properly maintained will reduce energy consumption and help you save. Replace your furnace filter monthly, and replace it when it gets dirty.

Use a humidifier to add moisture to the air - The air inside your home can become very dry. Moist air feels warmer and holds heat better, so a humidifier can help you feel comfortable when your thermostat is set at a lower temperature.

Insulate all areas where heat might escape - Start with foam weather stripping for your doors and windows.

Lower the thermostat - Lower the set point on your water heater.

Use draft stoppers - Place a rolled up towel at the bottom of outside doorways to keep out cold air.

STAY SAFE

BASIC HOME EMERGENCY KIT AND TIPS

  • Rock salt or more environmentally safe products to melt ice on walkways.
  • Snow shovels and other snow removal equipment.
  • Adequate clothing and blankets to keep you warm.
  • Family Communications Plan
  • Bring pets inside during winter weather. 
  • Insulate pipes with insulation and allow faucets to drip a little during cold weather to avoid freezing. Running water, even at a trickle, helps prevent pipes from freezing.
  • All fuel-burning equipment should be vented to the outside and kept clear.
  • Keep fire extinguishers on hand, and make sure everyone in your house knows how to use them. 
  • Learn how to shut off water valves (in case a pipe bursts).

BASIC AUTO EMERGENCY KIT (Keep these items in a bag in your trunk)

  • Battery-powered radio, flashlight, and extra batteries
  • Blanket & Old winter boots and clothes for the trunk
  • Booster cables
  • First-aid kit
  • Bottled water and nonperishable high-energy foods
  • Shovel, snowbrush and ice scraper
  • Keep your gas tank filled above halfway to avoid emergencies in bad weather.

Reference:

http://farmersalmanac.com/

http://www.ready.gov/winter-weather

http://energy.gov/energysaver/articles/thermostats

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