Pumpkins are plentiful, the Seahawks’ season has kicked off, and fall is officially here. Our state’s weather forecasters have said we’re on track for a “La Nina” winter, meaning colder-than-average temperatures and a need for a little more heat in our homes.
With Winter on its way, it’s best to be proactive when it comes to preparing your home. Taking these six simple, preventative steps now can save you time, money, and headaches in the long run, as well as keep your family warm this winter in the Pacific Northwest.
Tip #1: Test Your Furnace and Make Sure It’s Been Serviced: Have you turned on your furnace since last winter? If you haven’t, it’s a good idea to do this now. Don’t wait until the first chilly night to find out you have a problem. You should also make sure your furnace has been inspected and serviced. We recommend once per year for optimal performance. We also offer yearly service contracts to help you stay on track with recommended maintenance.
Tip #2: Change Your Air Filter: Your furnace’s air filters collect dust throughout the year. Changing your filters regularly is one of the most cost-efficient ways to promote better air circulation and fuel efficiency. Clogged filters make your furnace work harder, which can lead to other problems.
Tip #3: Seal Up Cracks to Eliminate Drafts: Address any gaps around your windows and doors to eliminate drafts. We all know when there is a crack in the a window or door, cold air can enter. But on windy days, when there is a greater difference in air pressure inside versus outside your house, a vacuum is created. When this happens, warm air is literally sucked out in mass volume. Weather stripping and caulk are two easy solutions that can end up saving you money. While you’re at it, close the blinds in rooms you’re not using regularly and keep bathroom fans—which also remove warm air—off when not in use.
Tip #4: Upgrade Your Thermostat: There are many options on the market. The newer “smart” thermostats allow more specific scheduling options so that when you are away during the day, you are not heating your home unnecessarily. Some even allow you to control your thermostat from your smart phone. Regardless of the type of furnace you have, upgrading your thermostat can help make your overall system run more efficiently while saving you money in the long run.
Tip #5: Fill your Heating Oil Tank: If you’re on automatic fill, you’re all set! If not, check your level and call to schedule before it gets cold and you run out. Running out of fuel is not only hard on your furnace, but on a cold day it can be hard on your peace of mind.
Tip #6: Use a Better Fuel. Genesee Bioheat is the BEST fuel for your home, for your community, and for our planet. For over twenty years, Genesee Energy has provided customers across the Puget Sound with the home heating option, Bioheat. Bioheat is a blend of traditional fuel and safe, clean, renewable biodiesel that reduces pollution and improves local air quality making communities healthier places to live.
- Can be used in existing oil tanks and furnaces without any modifications.
- Can be a more affordable alternative to the significant cost of converting your heat system.
- Is a lower carbon alternative available today and made from a variety of local renewable sources.