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5 home weatherization tips to stay cozy and efficient

Posted On: Filed Under: Gas fireplace, Insulation No Comments on 5 home weatherization tips to stay cozy and efficient

The following tips feature easy checks, adjustments, and maintenance practices you can undertake now to ensure your fall and winter seasons stay warm, dry, and efficient.

Keep those cold days warm

Preparing your heating system for the weather change is perhaps the most important component of fall and winter comfort. Sediment build-up in your furnace or heat pump causes inefficiency, unnecessary cost, and can even present a safety issue. We recommend our 37-point precision tune up to ensure your family stays warm and safe this season.

Bonus tip: Don’t forget to replace your furnace filter regularly. WES makes it even easier with our filter program, which automatically delivers filters to your door when it’s time for replacement.

Insulate before it’s too late

When your winter coat is too light or just not suitable to the conditions, the cold seeps in and you need to turn up the heat. A poorly insulated home is the same way. It causes your heat to travel to unnecessary locations, while working harder in the places you do need it, such as the living spaces and bedrooms. Upgrading or increasing your insulation now is one of the most effective ways to achieve energy savings—especially when you work with WES.

Check for drafts and cracks

While you may enjoy the crisp fall breeze, you definitely don’t want it breezing into your home. You also don’t want your warm air to escape. Luckily, weatherizing your windows and doors is relatively easy and can make a big difference for both comfort and energy savings.

First, test each window and exterior door in your home. Do you feel drafts coming through? Look for cracks. For doors, you’ll see them on the edges, where a bit of sunlight peeks through. Simply apply new weather stripping (potentially with a larger thickness). Window cracks or seal breaks will require caulking or weather stripping as well.

However, if your windows have larger problems, such as rot, condensation between glass panes, or continuous leakage, it may be time to replace them. Contact WES about window options and replacement or take a look at this recent blog post to learn more.

Cozy up

The leaves are falling, the days are becoming shorter, and you find yourself dreaming about basking in the warmth of your fireplace. If this isn’t on your fall and winter to-do list, it should be. No firewood, matches, kindling, or soot required. Gas fireplaces from WES feature beautiful designs and ambiance, while providing glowing, efficient heat that will serve as the backdrop to your fall and winter memories.

See the light

With shorter days descending upon us, the lights must stay on longer. Check both your indoor and outdoor lights to ensure they’ve all been replaced with energy efficient light bulbs. This is particularly important for outdoor lights, which tend to stay on for long periods of time in the fall and winter. Take it one step farther by installing lighting products that feature automatic daylight shut-off, motion sensors, and can withstand rain and snow. Doing so will keep your home bright and efficient.

Yes, summer has come to an end. But welcome fall and winter by following these weatherization tips, and your family will stay comfortable for all the football parties, pumpkin-carving sessions, and turkey dinners the season has to offer.

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Top 10 back to school energy savings

Posted On: Filed Under: Tank water heaters, Tankless water heaters 4 Comments on Top 10 back to school energy savings

 

Be in hot water

Is your water heater up to the challenge of multiple, concurrent showers? Getting ready for school and work can put a strain on an old or undersized water heater—making showers chilly. If your water heater is nearing ten years old, it may be time for an energy-efficient upgrade from Washington Energy. Check out our standard and tankless water heaters and ensure your fall mornings aren’t starting colder than they need to.

Stay warm at the right time

You hate wasting energy, but you also don’t want to return to a cold home. The answer is simple: set it and forget it. Honeywell’s thermostats are sleek, smart, and can provide major savings on your energy bills—up to 15%. Set the thermostat to drop the temperature during the day, raise it right before you or the kids get home, and reap the rewards all season long.

Inspect your heating

Speaking of heat, it’s a good idea to get your furnace inspected by a professional before you start using it in full force. A Precision Tune-Up will make sure it stays running smoothly during the back to school season and beyond.

fridge

Don’t let the cold out

The back to school season means the return of early morning lunch prep. When you’re making lunches, grab everything you need out of the refrigerator at one time and be sure to shut the door. Leaving the door open, even for short periods of time, can waste a surprising amount of energy.

Remember to unplug

It sounds spooky, but “vampire power” is very real. It’s the energy loss that comes from devices you’re not using, but still have plugged in. Think hair dryers, fans, and video game consoles. Get your family in the habit of unplugging devices before school and work to combat this creepy (and costly) phenomenon.

Close the blinds

If you find your home is too hot or too cold – a culprit might be your windows. Closing your blinds or curtains can mitigate cold air or block hot rays of sunshine.

Don’t let a drip drain your wallet

Be sure to fix faucet leaks, drips and running toilets as soon as possible. If you’re unsure of the overall state of your plumbing, consider a plumbing inspection, which will identify these costly problems.

Time your lighting

Always forgetting to turn off the porch light? How about the living room lamp before bed? As the days get shorter, it’s a great time to program your lights to a timer. You can set them to illuminate at homework time and turn off for bedtime.

Have a backup (generator) plan

Do you have a plan for power loss during an ice or windstorm? A Ggenerac backup generator from WES ensures life goes on without skipping a beat. Homework is done, meals can be cooked, and the family stays warm.

home energy audit

Know where you stand

The first day of school is a great time to maximize your home’s energy efficiency before fall and winter set in. A home energy audit gives you the knowledge and information you need for improvement, including:

  • Customized color report detailing audit results
  • Prioritized list of opportunities to improve home’s performance
  • Tips to improve indoor air quality
  • Utility savings modeling on home
  • Detailed breakdown of available incentives and rebates

While saying goodbye to summer can be tough, the back to school season is a fresh start and an exciting time for everyone. With additional energy savings, back to school can be economical as well.

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End of summer maintenance tips

Posted On: Filed Under: Gas fireplace, Insulation No Comments on End of summer maintenance tips

 

Fireplaces

Is there anything better than the warm glow and heat from a fireplace as the cold weather sets in? Before you begin using your wood-burning fireplace on a regular basis, you may need to have your flue and chimney professionally cleaned to ensure you can use it safely. Build-up, debris, and smoke can present serious safety issues. The best option for families who enjoy time around the fire is to install a gas fireplace. Our archgard gas fireplaces bring energy efficient warmth and true beauty to any home. Plus, with the push of a button, frigid winter days become cozy and inviting.

Furnaces

It may be hard to imagine now, but soon you’ll be trading in the air conditioning, fans, and open windows for heat. Make sure your furnace is ready for this change by testing it and replacing the air filter. You can purchase them as needed, or sign up for our filter program and have them automatically shipped to your home for free when it’s time for replacement. The program is an easy, convenient way to keep your furnace running smoothly.

For total furnace efficiency, safety, and peace of mind, we recommend scheduling a precision tune up. This 37-point proactive inspection will diagnose problems or system failures, perform preventative maintenance, and certify that your furnace is operating to the manufacturer’s specifications. In short, we’ll make sure your family stays warm as the weather turns cold.

Insulation

Out of site, out of mind? Not so much. Just because you don’t see it everyday, doesn’t mean your insulation should be overlooked. Particularly in the winter months, the level of insulation in your home is incredibly important for comfort, efficiency, and energy costs. Attics, crawlspaces, and ducts in both older and newer homes are rarely insulated at proper levels, meaning your heating system may be working harder than it needs to. A home energy audit from Washington Energy Services can pinpoint these areas and help you make a plan to best meet the unique insulation needs your home.

In these last few weeks of summer, enjoy the long days and warm weather. Just set aside a few hours to prepare your home and ensure your fall and winter seasons are just as warm, relaxing, and efficient.

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