Sparkle & Smile

Blog for Cleaner and Healthier Homes.

Healthy Home Uncategorized

Preparing For Fall

September 06, 2012

The summer season is officially over for the year, and as sad as I am to see it go, I am looking forward to a beautiful fall season.  

In preparation for fall, keep these tips in mind:

Save money on utility bills.  Instead of raising the thermostat during the cool weather, grab a sweater.  The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency says heating a house around 2,280 square feet adds up to about 34 percent of a homeowners’ utility bill. For every degree turned down on the thermostat will save about 4 percent in monthly utility expenses.  Don’t forget to buy draft stoppers for all the doorways to stop the cool air from coming in.

To save even more money, if your furnace is over 15 years old, consider replacing it with an energy-efficient model.

Try composting.  According to the EPA, 24 percent of waste comes from yard and food waste that could very well be composted.  Leaves, grass clippings and yard waste that is raked up can be composted.   Composting enriches soil and reduces the need for water, fertilizers and pesticides. 

Water.  Many water heaters can operate fine at 120-degrees Fahrenheit (49 degrees Celsius).  Lowering the temperature can also help increase the lifespan of the heater.  For every 10 degrees the water temperature is lowered can save you about 3 percent on the utility bill.  Wrapping an insulating blanket around your water heater can also save about 4 percent in water heating costs.  

Green clean.  Get rid of toxic cleaners and start using natural, homemade cleaners to clean your home.  Lessen your indoor air pollutants by cleaning with lemons, vinegar, and baking soda.  I clean with them all year long and it keeps my house fresh, healthy, and clean!  An all-purpose cleaner can be made just by mixing baking soda and water together…it is that easy!

Seal cracks.  According to the U.S. Department of Energy, sealing leaks around the house may save about 5 to 30 percent in energy costs.  Check to see if there are cracks or leaks around electrical outlets, window frames, baseboards, and around pipes.  Caulk all leaks and cracks. 

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