Saturday, December 12, 2009

Winterizing my apartment to save money

There are many aspects of the cold weather that I like... drinking copious amounts of hot tea, watching snow fall before it gets dirty from foot/car traffic, winter accessories... I could go on. But one thing I don't like about the cold weather months is how my energy significantly spikes as the temperature falls. To avoid getting sticker shock every month when I look at the energy usage on my Pepco (the name of the energy company here in DC) bill I do the following:

  • Seal my windows with plastic to prevent cold air from coming through the cracks. I absolutely love my apartment, but my windows are a bit drafty, so this is an easy way to prevent the heat from escaping.
  • Lay a towel down by the crack at my front door to prevent the cold air from sneaking in. After all, I'm not paying to heat the hallway! Maybe eventually I'll find a more stylish option to block the door draft, but for now a towel or old pillowcase work just fine.
  • Keep the heat temperature relatively low (no higher than 65 degrees) and just use a space heater to get the room a comfortable temperature. I also only need to heat one room at a time.
  • All year-round I try to only turn lights on in the room I'm in at that given time. I love light, but it's kind of silly and a waste of money (and energy) to have every light in my apartment blazing when I'm home.
I do use budget billing for my Pepco bill because I like knowing how much my payment will be each month, but if my usage spikes significantly, my monthly payment can be raised, so I really try to monitor my usage year-round. These small steps make me more comfortable indoors and help me to manage my energy bill.

Do you have small tricks you implement to winterize your home?


me in millions said...

My bill always seems to spike in the summer. Interesting.