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Tips for Saving Energy — And Lowering Heating Bills — During Winter

This shows a man adjusting his thermostat for a blog on keeping your home more energy efficient and lowering your heating bills during winter.

It’s February, so we must be out of the worst of it, right? Who are we kidding. Those of us who live in winter climates (like this author, in Green Bay, WI!) know not to get our hopes up for spring too early. Heck, we’ve seen snow in May! 

But what about those heating bills? Especially during the recent stretch of sub-zero temps. Some of us may have received some alarming bills that had us thinking twice about what to set the temperature at. 

Here are a few tips, from the U.S. Department of Energy, to make sure your home stays energy-efficient all winter long.

This shows a thermostat on the wall for a blog on energy efficient homes and how to keep your heating bills down in the winter.

  1. Ensure your windows are properly sealed. This means caulking small gaps, applying weather stripping to moveable parts, and using window attachments like curtains, blinds or shutters. 
  2. Most drapes can reduce heat loss from a room by up to 10%. Therefore, in winter, close your drapes, curtains or blinds at night and open them during the day for added warmth from the sun.
  3. Check your heating filters at least once every three months. Dirty filters can reduce airflow, making your system work harder. This takes longer to heat your home and costs you more.
  4. Use a programmable thermostat.  You can save as much as 10% a year on heating and cooling by simply turning your thermostat back 7-10 degrees for 8 hours a day. So, while you’re at work or you’re sleeping, turn the heat down. It’s important to note, if your home has electric resistance heating, steam heat or radiant floor heat, a programmable
    thermostat may not be the best option for you. Talk to the manufacturer or company that installed your heating system before investing in a programmable thermostat.

Also, it’s a good idea to unplug unused appliances. This might not keep you warmer, but it will cut down on your energy costs. Now, we’re not talking about major appliances. Those should stay plugged in. However, things like laptops, computers, coffee makers, lamps, phone chargers — they all draw energy from your home, even when they’re off. According to, some estimates say “vampire energy” can account for up to 10% of your total power use in an average month. That translates to an average savings of $220 per year, just by taking a few extra seconds to unplug!

And, of course, let’s not forget one of the easiest measures to stay warm — layering! This picture shows a baby bundled up in warm clothes for a blog on cutting down on heating bills this winter.

Maybe you need to throw a blanket over your lap while you’re working, or get cozy on the couch, check out our 100%  Recycled Original Puffy Blanket. To see other color and size options, just search “puffy blanket” on our site. You can stay warm on-the-go, while remaining stylish, with the Organic Cotton Blanket Travel Wrap. And if you just need an added layer around your neck, check out the Artisan-Made Organic Cotton Didi Colorblock Scarf. All of these are sustainable choices, that will help keep you warmer while you’re trying to keep your home more energy-efficient.