11 Tips to Reduce Your Winter Energy Bill

Winter is just around the corner. And with winter comes colder temperatures and high winter energy bills. However, with these 11 tips from Nicholson, you can reduce your energy usage and save money this winter.

Install a programmable thermostat. Installing a programmable thermostat will allow you to lower the temperature (and save money!) while you are at work or away but still come home to a warm house.

Get a humidifier. A humidifier monitors the humidity in your air and adjusts for maximum comfort. Air that is more humid feels warmer, which allows you to set your thermostat lower while still remaining comfortable.

Wear warm clothes around the house. By wearing long sleeves, warm pants and socks in your house, you can lower the temperature on your thermostat and still remain comfortable. Lowering your thermostat 1 degree Fahrenheit can save you 3% on your winter energy bills.

Change fans to run clockwise. In the summer, your fans should be running counter-clockwise to push air down. In the winter, they should be reversed to run clockwise, which will pull the cooler air up and circulate your warm air.

Check or replace your air filter. Check your heater filter at least monthly, replacing when dirty. A dirty filter causes your furnace or boiler to work harder. Replacing it with a new one will help your reduce your winter energy bill and save you money.

Turn off your exhaust fans. The exhaust fans in your bathroom and kitchen are important to help fight mold and expel cooking fumes. However, they also allow large amounts of heated air to escape while running. After use, remember to promptly turn them off.

Get an annual furnace/boiler checkup. Your heater had likely gone unused for months. Before its peak performance is again called for in the dead of winter, make sure it is ready by getting a boiler or furnace tune-up. Annual professional tune-ups will extend the life of your heater and keep it running efficiently throughout the winter.

Clear airflow for registers and vents. Make sure your vents and registers are not blocked by holiday decorations, blinds or furniture. Restricted airflow causes your heater to work overtime, which is directly reflected in your winter energy usage.

Open curtains, drapes and blinds of south facing windows during the day. Reduce your winter energy bill by opening south facing window coverings during the day. Close them again at night to keep the heat inside.

Install energy efficient lighting. Compact Fluorescent Bulbs (CFL’s) use as little as a quarter of the energy of traditional bulbs. Short winter days mean an increase in the amount of time you use indoor lighting. Reduce your winter energy bill by using efficient lighting and turning off the lights in empty rooms.

Check and increase attic insulation. For energy efficiency, Energy Star recommends a minimum insulation level of R49 in Massachusetts. That equates to 13-15 inches, depending on the type of insulation in your home.

This winter, low temperatures do not have to mean sky-high energy bills. Nicholson encourages you to take advantage of these 11 money-saving, energy-reducing tips.

Contact us today for more information on how Nicholson Heating & Air Conditioning can help you save money and keep you warm this winter.

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  • Francis from Nicholson Plumbing and Heating was excellent. He was here to evaluate HVAC in our home. He was very patient and answered all my questions. He is also polite and easy to communicate with him. He explained technical concepts to me in layperson terms!

    - Shelley S.

  • Nicholson offered what is possibly the best customer service I have dealt with in a home repair situation.  I called them because I was looking to replace my very old furnace.  They came out to do an initial estimate, and then came back when I had some further questions about my options.  After installing the furnace, they ran into some problems with my air ducts.  This happened on a Friday, and the problem was fixed by Monday afternoon.  In addition to their excellent service, they did quality work at a fair price.  I would recommend them to anyone looking for an HVAC company in the Framingham area!

    - Melissa T.

  • Recently used these guys because my HVAC unit AC wasn’t working (first hot day of summer).  Showed up on time, wore booties, fixed the unit.  During the visit we talked about how my unit was having problems in the winter – which was resulting in NSTAR service calls of maybe 3-4 times per season (I am on a service plan with them).   He was the first guy to tell me WHY the problem was happening, and HOW to fix it.  I find it strange that all of the NSTAR guys etc. no one took time to point out how to fix the source of the problem…Very professional, smart.  I would use them again, and plan to for the fix on my heating unit!

    - Ben J.

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