Cold nights and chilly mornings are on the way! It won’t be long before we start turning up the thermostat and lighting the fireplace. The kids snuggle into warm pajamas and fuzzy slippers and everyone is feeling warm and comfortable, then the first bill of winter arrives from the power company! The team from San Luis Obispo’s Electricraft, Inc. has some tips for things you can do to start reducing the winter energy bill before the cold nights arrive.

One of the first things is to conduct an energy assessment to discover where the home is losing heat. There may be things that can be fixed before the cold weather arrives. Some of the common problem areas include:

  • The heating system isn’t working at its best. An inspection tells you what repairs are needed or whether ducts need to be cleaned.
  • Check for drafty windows and doors and seal any drafts to keep the cold air out. Weatherstripping helps close gaps and heavier curtains over windows help keep rooms warmer.
  • Pet doors can be a contributing source to letting in cold air. If possible, close the pet door when everyone is home and let the pets out at scheduled times.
  • Turn the thermostat down when no one is home and during the night.
  • Take advantage of the sunshine warm the inside of the house.

Summer heat and winter cold are the two seasons that put the most strain on the home electrical systems. Periodic inspections just to make sure all the circuits are working is a cost-saving measure. Some of the electrical system issues that can cause the energy bill to increase include:

  • Thermostat wiring. Faulty thermostat wiring can interfere with the efficient operation of the heating and cooling systems. Consider upgrading to a smart thermometer that allows the house temperature to be controlled remotely.
  • Old wiring in older homes may not be sufficient to support the new appliances and electronics in use by your family.
  • Older appliances are not as efficient as new ones, especially large appliances like the washer, dryer, refrigerator and even the stove and oven. Older HVAC systems are also not as energy efficient as newer models.

Along with being a dangerous fire and electrocution hazard, faulty wiring can also contribute to appliances not operating efficiently. The team from the San Luis Obispo electrical company advises that any of the following are indications of a problem in the electrical system and need immediate attention:

  • Frayed or loose wires, including damaged extension cords.
  • A frequently tripping circuit breaker.
  • Any discoloration or scorching on outlets and switch plates.
  • Areas on the walls around outlets and switch plates, or the covers themselves, feeling warm to the touch.
  • Buzzing noises, or a burning, fishy smell from wiring areas.

At the first sign of smoke, fire, sparks, or any other indication of an electrical problem, turn off the main power switch and call 911. Vacate the house if necessary.

The company team from San Luis Obispo’s Electricraft, Inc. wishes everyone a warm and safe winter. Serving Central Coast communities since it was founded in 1984, the family-owned business meets all of the electrical and solar energy needs of families, businesses and public agencies.

Call Electricraft for top service from a team of skilled, experienced and licensed electricians and solar technicians. No job is too small or too big.