Quick tips for winter energy efficiency

Winter temperatures are fast approaching and that means it’s time for a quick refresher on how to save money when it’s cold outside.

  • Keep your heater’s thermostat set to 68 degrees or less.
  • If you’re going to be away from your home for more than four hours, lowering the thermostat another 5-7 degrees can help reduce both usage and strain on your system. The exception is if you have an electric heat pump. Only adjust the thermostat by 1-2 degrees to minimize the need of the emergency heat strips from coming on when you return home.
  • Set your water heater to 120 degrees. If your tank water heater is electric, be sure to wrap it in a water heater blanket.
  • Have your furnace professionally serviced to ensure it’s running optimally. If you have a heat pump, check the outside compressor.
  • Open your blinds and curtains. Direct sunlight will both light and warm the room while limiting the burden on your heater.
  • Whenever the sun goes down, be sure to close the curtains and blinds to hold in that warmth.
  • Set your ceiling fans to spin clockwise, pulling the heat down into the house.
  • Seal any cracks around your doors and windows to keep out the cold and hold in the heat.
  • If you have a pool pump, set the freeze protection to 35 degrees. In most cases, it should run for one hour per 10 degrees outside temperature. For example, if it’s an average of 50 degrees outside, run the pool pump for five hours per day.
  • Set the pool pump to run during the coldest part of the day, either late at night or early morning.

Cold temperatures can lead to higher electricity usage. For homes with all-electric heaters, the usage can be higher than summer! The best way for CoServ Members to avoid surprises when you get your bill is to sign up for SmartHub alerts to track your usage. You can check usage in real time, receive daily usage notifications, and set up a custom budget to alert you when you pass a set threshold. Important note, energy costs are expected to remain higher than normal across Texas and the nation, and this means bills could be higher.