Wanna save money on your winter electricity bills? This blog will discuss some simple ways to winterize your home to stay warm and save money.
Keep reading to learn how!
How to Winterize Home Electrical System.
Let’s face it, winters in South Louisiana are milder than in many other areas, but they can still wreak havoc on electrical equipment (and your electricity bill!)
Winterizing your home helps it withstand the colder weather, saving you money and preventing potential damage to your property.
This blog will discuss some simple ways to winterize your home to stay warm and save money.
Let’s get started!
What is winterizing your home?
Winterization is the process of taking care of your home or building before cold temperatures arrive to help protect against potentially hazardous situations that could occur due to the cold and freezing temperatures.
Winterizing your home involves doing a few things:
How is winterizing my home’s electrical system different from winterizing my home?
The most significant difference is that you will focus on making the electrical system in your home function better and safely through winter.
Winterizing your home can include many aspects of residential property maintenance, such as:
What does this mean for me?
- Winter maintenance can keep your home safe through the cold months and help you save money.
- Winterizing your home is easy, inexpensive, and effective.
- Winterizing your home’s electrical system now will ensure that it functions as well as possible over the winter season.
- Winterizing also helps keep you safe from the dangers of inclement weather and potentially costly damage to your property.
- Winterizing your home is important for those living in Louisiana who want to save money, stay safe, and protect their electrical equipment.
It is best to speak with a professional electrician to help you winterize your electrical system because they know what will work best for you and your home.
For more information on Winterizing Your Home, call (225) 953-4764.
Now, here are some easy ways that you can keep your home safe and efficient during the winter.
Pay special attention to your home’s heating system.
Whether you use gas, oil, or electricity for heat, you will need to ensure that it is fully protected against cold weather.
You should make sure that your heating unit/heating is in good working condition.
If you use electricity for heat, ensure that all electrical connections are correctly connected and that none of the fuses are blown.
In addition, it is a good idea to have your heating unit inspected by a professional electrician before winter starts.
He will make sure that the power cord is the right size and has a proper connection.
If you use an oil or gas heating unit, make sure that the connections are sturdy and that nothing is leaking.
Don’t Overload Your Home’s Electrical Wiring.
During the colder months, you’ll likely be using a lot more electricity in your home.
Using a space heater to stay warm may be convenient, but it can overload your home’s electrical and heating system, causing problems with your power supply.
In addition, you will need to make sure that extension cords are not overloaded by heavy-duty appliances, such as dryers or ovens.
If you need to use an extension cord, make sure that it is the proper gauge of wire and that it does not run through doorways, under carpets, or anywhere else where it may get too hot.
If your breaker box is tripping, your home might be overloaded.
If this happens, turn off certain parts of your home that are using more electricity than usual until a professional electrician has fixed the problem.
For example, it may be best to minimize or stop using appliances like the oven, dishwasher, dryer, and space heater while waiting for the problem to be fixed.
Reverse the ceiling fans
In the winter months, ceiling fans shouldn’t be rotating in a clockwise motion. If they are, they’ll make the room cooler and thus require your heater to work harder.
Change the HVAC filter.
The summer months are a busy time for your HVAC system. One would think that the winter would be a “breeze” for them, but you’d be wrong!
Winter weather tends to stir up dust and dirt “hiding” in the ducts, so heating systems have to put out more force than usual to push air through them. This can cause burn-out of the motor for some systems, so it’s wise to replace the filter often during this time of the year.
Protect Your Pipes
For the most part, the most expensive part is protecting your pipes.
Common winter threats to your pipes include:
- Burst Pipes due to freezing water (average cost of $2,200 for a new pipe)
- Frozen Pipes (average cost of $300-$1,000 in lost or additional water)
- Water leaks (average cost of $1,000 to find and repair a leak)
You can prevent burst pipes by insulating them or wrapping them in heat tape. In Louisiana, a common practice is getting some foam at your local hardware store, covering the pipe, and then using duct tape to seal the seams.
If you’re in a pinch, you can use a pool noodle or newspaper.
Check Your Water Heater
Water heaters have been known to freeze in cold temperatures, so you must have yours adequately insulated. Many are designed with insulation around them already, but if this isn’t the case, you can use sheets of Styrofoam or bubble wrap for an inexpensive fix.
If you heat water with electricity, ensure that your power supply is installed correctly and that it isn’t damaged or broken anywhere along the cord.
Be sure to check the thermostat on your tank and ensure it’s set to a low enough temperature (around 120 degrees). If possible, keep the heater off while no one is home.
Another great way to save yourself money is to purge the tank. There is usually a valve on the bottom that you can connect a hose to. Open the valve and drain it outdoors or in a sink or bathtub.
You’d be surprised at the sludge and junk that comes out!
This process will help your water heater run more efficiently and help you save money.
There are many ways to keep your home cool and save on energy costs, but one of the most effective is by making sure all windows in your home have been sealed.
Sealing them will not only make rooms more comfortable for you when it’s cold outside; they also reduce air leaks that can lead to wasted heat escaping into spaces where there should be none!
Fix Drafty Doors
Drafts are a leading cause of high energy bills, so winterizing means cutting down on them by making sure the seals around the edges of your doors are intact. Although some may think it’s expensive to hire a contractor to do this, there is a way you can do it yourself:
Get weatherstripping tape from the hardware store and apply it around the door jamb. It’s cheap and easy to use!
You’ll notice a significant difference in your home once you’ve removed those pesky drafts!
Check Your Electrical Outlets for Drafts Too!
It’s easy to overlook the tiny holes in electrical outlets.
But if there is even a small hole, it can lead to wasted energy every day your lights are on!
Winterizing your home means making sure everything is sealed correctly. So make sure you take a close look at ALL outlets in your house to find any unwanted drafts.
Don’t Forget Your Lighting.
The end of daylight savings time means the days are shorter, which means you’ll be using more lighting in your home.
Plus, you’ll likely be using more outdoor lights to see your walkways and driveways.
Your electrical system works harder so your utility bills can increase.
Install energy-efficient bulbs or LED replacements to decrease your energy costs. LED replacements use as much as 75% less than their traditional counterparts.
Make sure that all of your bulbs and lighting fixtures are clean. This may not seem important, but the amount of dirt and dust on a light bulb can reduce its efficiency by up to 50%.
Have a Plan for Power Outages
Although it doesn’t happen too often here in South Louisiana, power surges and outages can happen without warning.
Sure we rarely have downed power lines from heavy snow or a downed power grid from an ice storm, but you should still be prepared for them so that you don’t lose your cool (no pun intended) if a winter storm hits!
If you have a plan for backup power in place, the only thing you’ll need to worry about is how many candles it takes to keep the lights on during an outage. 😉
Consider installing a backup generator. This can be costly, but it’s a good idea that will save you money in the long run!
To find out more about our generator installation options, visit our generators page.
Speaking of candles, let’s talk safety.
During the winter months, there is an increase in electrical fires.
It’s unfortunate, but it happens every year.
But you can lower your fire risk by avoiding the following potential hazards. Here are a few things that homeowners need to be aware of when it comes to winterizing their electrical systems.
- Do not use space heaters or other types of heating sources that are not intended for indoor use.
- Ensure appliances are in good working condition before using them and don’t overload outlets.
- Once you’re finished with an extension cord, it’s best to unplug it completely (especially if you’re not using the charger).
- Never use damaged cords.
- Be sure all your candles are out before you go to bed or leave the house.
- Keep flammable materials away from any heat source (this includes candles!
- Use flame-resistant materials for holiday decorating.
- Don’t overload circuits.
- Check smoke detector batteries. (Improperly functioning smoke detectors are of no use!)
- If you’re using fuel-fired heaters, install a carbon monoxide detector. Carbon monoxide detectors work by constantly monitoring the air for carbon monoxide (a byproduct of fuel-fired heaters) and sounding an alarm if any is detected.
- When you’re using a space heater, be sure to place it on a level surface away from things that can burn, and be sure to turn it off when you leave the room.
- In addition, make sure your home is well insulated, weatherized, and all areas of the house are clear of anything that could catch fire.
Schedule an Electrical Inspection
If you’re planning on using electric blankets, space heaters, or any other appliances that produce heat during the winter months, be sure to have an electrical inspection before the onset of cold weather.
Professional electricians can check for damage and ways to minimize the risk of house fires and keep everything working properly during inclement weather and colder months.
If you’re looking for a UL-certified electrician, we’d love to help! Our residential electricians are some of the most knowledgeable in the Baton Rouge, LA area, and we’ll back that up with a 100% satisfaction guarantee.
We service all of Baton Rouge and surrounding areas! Our service area includes:
- Denham Springs
- Port Allen
- Zachary, and more!
No matter where you’re located in the greater Baton Rouge area, we can come to you and make sure that your home is prepared for colder temperatures and that your home is ready for winter.
Complete the form below for your free quote: