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Friday, March 1, 2024
March 1, 2024

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Tips to stay warm, save money this winter


Tacoma —Mountain passes in the Cascades and the Olympics received heavy snowfall last week, while the rest of Washington experienced freezing temperatures.

This week, temperatures around the state have warmed up into the high 40s and mid to low 50s. Tacoma had a high of about 53 degrees with a low of 51 degrees on Wednesday as the rainy weather set in.

Although temperatures have slightly warmed this week, colder temperatures are still upon us and turning up your heat in your home can also significantly increase your energy bill. Here are a few ways to save money without sacrificing your comfort and warmth during the colder months.

How to save on your electric bill

According to Puget Sound Energy, setting your thermostat to 68 degrees or lower when you are home and awake, and lowering your thermostat 7 to 10 degrees when you are asleep or away can help save energy in the home and lower your electric bill.

Lowering your thermostat by 7 to 10 degrees for eight hours a day can save you as much as 10 percent on your heating costs every year, according to the U.S. Department of Energy website.

“The smaller the difference between the indoor and outdoor temperatures, the lower your overall cooling bill will be,” according to the USDE website.

Changing filters in your heating equipment every 90 days and having a professional inspect your heating system to ensure that it is working properly can also help save energy, according to Puget Sound Energy.

Here are some other energy-saving tips from Puget Sound Energy that could help keep your home warm while reducing costs.

  • Use inexpensive weather-stripping and door sweeps to reduce air leaks around entry doors. For a no-cost fix, roll up a bath towel and hold it against the bottom of the door with a weight.
  • Fill, patch or caulk holes in floors and ceilings connected to unheated spaces. Often, large holes can be found in closets. Weather strip or temporarily seal access doors or hatches leading to unheated upper floors or attics.
  • Check that your floors, walls, duct system and attic ceiling are properly insulated.

Here are some other energy-saving tips from the U.S. Department of Energy for staying warm while cutting costs during winter:

  • Allow natural sunlight to come in during the day to keep your home warm
  • Cover drafty windows
  • Seal any air leaks around your home
  • Reduce heat loss from a fireplace