5 Ways To Minimize Your Rental Property’s Energy Bills During Winter
March 24, 2023
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Saving money is a priority for most people.
And, if you want to know how to save money during the winter season, we’ve got some tips to help you keep things frugal.
Here are five ways to minimize your rental’s energy bills during cold times.
Tip #1: Adjust the Thermostat
Setting the thermostat to an optimal temperature can have a substantial impact on your energy bills during the winter months. And the ideal temperature depends on your personal preferences and the insulation of your rental.
That said, setting your thermostat to 68°F (e.g., 20°C) during the day when you’re around is a good starting point. This temperature is comfortable for most people while being energy efficient. You can lower the temperature a few degrees at night or when you’re away from your rental to save even more energy.
If you have a programmable thermostat, it’s wise to automatically adjust the temperature based on your schedule. For instance, you can program it to lower the temperature when you’re at work or going to bed, and then go back up before you return from work or wake up in the morning.
It’s also essential to remember not to turn up the thermostat too high to heat your place quickly. Thermostats don’t work that way, and it will only waste energy and money. Instead, be patient and wait for your home to gradually warm up to the desired temperature.
Tip #2: Use Curtains and Blinds
Using curtains and blinds helps reduce heat loss in your rental. This, in turn, will lower your bill during the cold months.
During the day when the sun is up, it’s wise to open your curtains and blinds to allow sunlight into your rental. Sunlight naturally heats your home, reducing the need for more heating. However, remember to shut your curtains and blinds when the sun sets to help retain the heat inside.
At night, closing your curtains and blinds can help limit heat loss by supplying more insulation. This insulation helps prevent cold air from coming in and warm air from escaping.
In addition to closing your curtains and blinds, consider using insulated or thermal curtains, which are designed to provide additional insulation and further limit heat loss. These curtains are typically made from thick, warm materials like wool, felt, or polyester.
Tip #3: Seal Drafts
Drafts occur when cold air invades your rental through gaps and cracks around windows, doors, and vents. These gaps also allow warm air to get out, making it more difficult to heat your rental. Thus, it’s vital to seal these drafts to lower your energy bill.
Here are several actions you can take to seal drafts:
- Walk around your home and check for chilly air coming through gaps and cracks near windows, doors, and vents. You can also use a candle or incense stick to detect drafts by fanning it near these areas and seeing if the flame flickers or the smoke moves.
- Weatherstripping is a great material to seal gaps and cracks around windows and doors. It comes in several types, such as adhesive-backed foam tape or V-strip, and it’s easy to apply to gaps.
- Caulking is a useful material for sealing gaps and cracks in windows, doors, and other areas. It can be applied to small gaps and cracks around windows, doors, and other areas where air may get inside.
- Door sweeps are useful to put on the bottom of doors to prevent drafts from entering through gaps. They’re usually made of rubber or brush-like materials and can be easily installed with screws or adhesive.
- Draft stoppers help block drafts that get inside through gaps under doors and windows. They’re usually made of fabric and are easy to install on the bottom of doors or windowsills.
Tip #4: Use Space Heaters
Using a space heater strategically can be an effective way to reduce your energy bills during the winter months. Here are some tips for using a space heater effectively:
- A space heater works best in small spaces. If you have a larger room, it may not be the most efficient way to heat the space.
- Use a space heater to support your existing heating system, not as your primary heating source. For instance, you can use a space heater in your bedroom at night to make your room warmer while turning down the central heating system in the rest of your rental.
- Using a timer on your space heater helps you save energy by ensuring it only runs when you need it. For example, you can set it to turn on an hour before you wake up in the morning and shut down after you leave for work.
- When looking to buy a space heater, look for one that is energy efficient. Look for models with the Energy Star label, which means they meet strict energy efficiency guidelines.
- To avoid fires, make sure to keep your space heater away from flammable materials like curtains, blankets, and rugs.
It’s vital to remember that using a space heater will add to your heat usage, even if you use it wisely. However, by following the tips we listed, you can reduce your overall energy usage and save money on your energy bills.
Tip #5: Dress Warmer
Dressing warmly is an easy and effective way to minimize your energy winter bills. Here are some tips for dressing warmer:
- Layering your clothing is a fantastic way to stay warm. Start with a thin, moisture-wicking base layer, add a middle layer for insulation, and finish with a thicker outer layer to block wind and rain.
- Wearing warm accessories (I.e., hats, gloves, and scarves) helps keep your head, hands, and neck warm, which regulates your body temperature.
- Choosing warm fabrics like wool or fleece helps keep you warm and dry. Avoid cotton as it doesn’t insulate as well when wet.
- Wearing warm socks and slippers can help keep your feet warmer.
All of these things allow you to keep your thermostat at a lower temperature than you could without these items. This, in turn, allows you to save money.
By adjusting your thermostat, using curtains and blinds wisely, sealing drafts, using space heaters effectively and dressing warmer, you can lower your winter energy bills. For more helpful tips when renting, check out our tenant guide here.