Fall is upon us and Winter is close at hand. Although the City of Marathon and the Florida Keys are famous for warm winter climates, residents should still keep energy consumption in mind as the winter winds are blowing in. The U.S. Department of Energy has compiled the following list of easy and inexpensive solutions for home and business owners to cut down their winter energy costs:
Well-maintained equipment runs more efficiently, so change your air filter monthly or as needed and tune up your HVAC equipment yearly.
Roll temperatures back by 10 to 15°F before bed and before leaving for work.
With the right safety practices, this can be a do-it-yourself project.
Lighting makes up about 10 percent of home energy costs, and CFLs can save up to 75 percent of that energy. They also last longer, saving money on replacements.
Seal doors and windows with weather stripping or caulk. Tape clear plastic film to the inside of window frames to further reduce leaks, and consider installing insulated curtains or blinds.
Keep your south-facing windows clean. Open curtains on south-facing windows during the day and close all curtains at night.
Most water heaters are set to 140°F, but at 115 to 120°F you’ll still have plenty of hot water. Insulate hot water pipes and, if your water heater is over 7 years old, consider a “wrap” to insulate the tank. Also consider heat traps on water heater tanks, timers that use off-peak power for electric water heaters, hot water recirculation loops, and drain-water heat recovery systems.
More tips from the U.S. Department of Energy.