Guest Editorial by NOCO
With cooler temperatures setting in, now is the time to get your home ready in advance of the snow and zero-degree wind chills. NOCO is sharing several energy tips to make sure your home isn’t caught in the cold this winter.
“NOCO has a great understanding of winter weather and energy preparedness, having provided a variety of energy services to homeowners throughout Western New York for the past 90 years,” said Pierre Aubertin, director, sales and energy solutions, NOCO. “Winter is coming and steps you can take now and also when your furnace is running can have a big impact on your heating and energy bills this year.”
To help prepare your home and heating system, NOCO recommends the following tips:
√ Replace your furnace filter. A dirty filter can put unnecessary strain on your furnace or cause damage, increasing your overall energy costs.
√ Schedule annual furnace maintenance. Contact your local HVAC technician to make sure your furnace is running efficiently.
√ Install a programmable thermostat to set temperatures based on your family’s schedule, so you don’t unnecessarily heat your home at a higher temperature when no one is there.
√ Be sure to check the batteries in your thermostat. They should be changed out at least once a year.
√ Add caulk or weather stripping to seal leaks around doors and windows to prevent heat from escaping.
√ Get a humidifier. This time of the year, the air inside your home can be dry. Moist air feels warmer and holds heat better, so a humidifier can help when your thermostat is set to a lower temperature.
√ Ask your energy provider about a balanced billing or budget plan. Breaking your energy costs into regular monthly payments can help offset the typically higher winter heating bills.
Once freezing temperatures have set in and you’re regularly using your furnace, NOCO shares a few additional energy saving tips:
√ Set your thermostat to the lowest temperature that is comfortable for you and your family.
√ Take advantage of your smart or programmable thermostat to set your home’s temperature for different times of the day based on your schedule. Also, make sure to lower your thermostat whenever you leave the house, but do not turn it off completely.
√ Ceiling fans aren’t just for summer. Set the fan to rotate clockwise to trap heat inside to keep rooms warmer during cooler months.
√ Check all your air vents to be sure they are not blocked by furniture or curtains.
√ Heat your home with help from the sun by leaving curtains and blinds open during the daytime. Be sure to close them at night to cut down on any chill from the windows.
Celebrating 90 years of energy distribution, NOCO serves thousands of heating, ventilating, natural gas, electricity, propane, and heating oil customers throughout Western New York. To learn more about NOCO’s energy assistance and maintenance programs or to schedule an annual tune-up to ensure a furnace is operating safely and efficiently, call NOCO at 716-614-6610 or visit noco.com.
NOCO is a leading full-service energy company based in Tonawanda.