If you go searching around the internet, you can easily find tips for how to conserve energy during winter weather. But in Southern California, the situation is different. We have some of the mildest winters in the Continental US. Heating systems sometimes need to come on, but they don’t run every day for hours at a time.
When it comes to saving energy, you need different strategies than “put in storm windows” (we don’t have storm windows). Deb has some tips for cutting down on your energy use in our climate.
Run your ceiling fans backwards
This is a basic trick people often aren’t aware of. Many homes have ceiling fans to help create breezy currents during the summer—an excellent way to reduce AC use! But those fans have a switch on their base that changes their rotation direction from counterclockwise to clockwise. This causes the fan to push down air from the ceiling into the living space, which creates a better distribution of warm air around rooms. It’s easy to do and can make a significant difference.
Upgrade old manual thermostats
If you still have slider-and-dial thermostats to run your HVAC system, you’re probably letting money go to waste. These thermostats lack the precision of newer digital models, and they don’t have the programmability that lets a homeowner create an energy-conserving program. We highly recommend looking into installing a smart thermostat, which automates energy conservation for the best outcome. (However, we advise you only work with professionals to upgrade thermostats, since a new thermostat may damage the existing HVAC system.)
Only run the heater when necessary
Now that you have a better thermostat in place, do you know the best settings for it? In general, we recommend not having the heater turn on until the indoor temperature drops below 68°F. Most people find 68°F perfectly comfortable, and it helps to cut down on energy bills. For every degree you lower the thermostat in winter, you can save around 2% on heating bills.
Arrange for heater maintenance
You may not turn on your furnace or other heating system often during the winter, but you still want it to run efficiently when it does. The best way to ensure this is to schedule annual fall maintenance for the heater with our team. It’s still fall now, so it’s a great time to have the work done. You’ll not only have an energy-saving heater, but it will last for years longer.
Put in LED bulbs
There’s less daylight during winter, so you’ll have your home’s lights turned on earlier. If you call our electricians to upgrade your old incandescent lights with LED lights, you can cut down on the power to light the house by 75%! LED lights can also last three times longer than standard bulbs, and that increases your savings. Our electricians work with both indoor and outdoor lighting, so why not have us provide you with a complete LED lighting makeover?
If you are looking for help with your home heating in North Hollywood, CA or elsewhere in our wide service area, just give us a shout.