My fall preparations are under way and that includes gathering all the summer stuff to store away. Renting an older home has me looking for ways to save $$$$ when it comes to utilities this winter.
There are many ways that are claimed to help but here are a few things you can do as a renter, to minimize the cost of utilities.
Fill up early and prepare early. If you have a propane tank, fireplace or even heating oil, do your major fill up or wood gathering in the summer when the prices are lower. Check into different companies cap prices, so you never pay more than the cap price even if the normal winter price is higher.
If you are dealing with wood and it doesn't come pre-split, rent a log splitter from your local Home Depot or Lowes. It is 67 for 4 hours but do it to save your fingers! Believe me, it hurts SO SO bad.
Know the true size of a cord of wood (4 ft. x 4 ft. x 8 ft.), especially when purchasing from someone so you don't over pay.
Limit drafts. Cold air is most likely leaking around windows, doors, electrical outlets, light fixtures, and gaps in corners, and can cause rooms to feel drafty.
Here are a number of things you can do:
1. Socket sealers (that are fire-retardant foam) and leaving those child-safety plugs into outlets is an easy way to help prevent additional cold air from coming into your home.
2.DIY Door Drafts that keep out the cold air and don't worry these are cheap to make. Click here for the tutorial. I didn't use rice, I used plastic shopping bags to stuff the inside of the draft stopper. Other options include pool noodles or pipe insulators, I would avoid things like rice or popcorn if you have problems with pests.
Drafty windows are the biggest heat loss. So what can we do? We thought about Plastic Film that you can seal the window with but this is expensive to buy year after year.
3. SO here is the solution that we used for windows. BUBBLE WRAP! Seriously! It still allows in light but will help cut your heat loss. All you need is a spray bottle, an exact-o knife or scissors and some bubble wrap. Mist the water onto your window and then push the bubble side of the wrap against the window. The amazing part is that the water will hold the bubble wrap to the window all winter, so you won't need no tape or glue or staple anything. Use the exacto knife to cut away any excess and fit it perfectly to each window. I used clear tape to secure the bubble wrap to itself to make a sheet to fit each window. The bubble wrap will not stain your windows or cause damage to your trim. Don't believe me check this out this article How to Stop Heat Loss by How to go Solar.org. Save money by saving all the bubble wrap you can get your hands on. I paid $17 for a whole roll of bubble wrap and did 8 windows with tons to spare.
Bigger the bubbles in the bubble wrap the BETTER!
5. Limit the power that you use. Simple things like unplugging those appliances that are used often and make sure to turn off the lights and keep your freezer full with all help keep the bill lower. Also so will using light bulbs with high energy efficiency.
6. Pull out the blankets and socks. Adding extra bedding and wearing socks during the day can keep you from turning up the thermostat which will save you money.
Hello, I'm Lindsey
A wife to hubby pursing higher education, a mother to two energetic kids, obsessed with all things farmhouse vintage and believer that food always taste better when it is shared.