6 Tips To Save Energy In Your Home This Winter In Minnesota
Tip #1. Get An Energy Saving, Electronic Thermostat. These are easy to install, usually inexpensive and can automatically reduce your home tempurature at night, reducing your energy consumption.
Tip #2. Dual Heat. If you only have a single heat source of gas, propane or oil heating, consider the investment into off-peak electric heat. Contact your local electric power company for more information. There is usually a cost involved in installing the device but often times the electric company will lower the total cost since you will be using "off-peak" electric heat, which can be cheaper than gas, propane or oil only heating.
Tip #3. Insulate, Insulate, Insulate. The harsh weather in Minnesota makes insulation your best friend. Adding insulation to the attic, unheated floors, walls, and around windows can save energy costs and add value to your home. Don't forget to keep attic vents open to "breathe" and allow moisture to escape. Adding insulation is an easy do-it-yourself job, with access to the area in question usually the biggest challenge.
Tip #4. Consider Wood. Minnesota is a state filled with timber. In many cases, wood is free. Not only that, but wood burning stoves are easy to install, just make sure to check your local codes for proper installation. Why not heat your garage or basement with wood? Stoves made lately are cleaner burning and create a very nice atmosphere on cold Minnesota nights.
Tip #5. Keep Your Furnace Running Smooth. Get your furnace checked and maintained BEFORE the winter season. Change the filter, vacuum out all vents and make sure your air ducts are not clogged or blocked. Close any vents you do not use.
Tip #6. Buy A More Energy Efficient Home. If you live in an older home or mobile home, energy costs may far exceed the normal costs of an energy efficient home of the same size. This does not mean you should immediately go and purchase a new home, but it might be worth thinking about if you add up your energy costs and find them to be extremely high plus the added cost associated with making the home more efficient.
About the Author: Jennifer McTighe is a Realtor with Coldwell Banker, Property III in Crosslake, MN. She specializes in buying and selling property in Central Minnesota, the heart of the lakes country. You can visit her site at http://www.jennifermctighe.com or call 218-330-4406 for more information