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How to Prepare Your Home for a Vacation

Google “Preparing for a Vacation” or “Vacation Prep” and you are bound to end up with thousands of articles about packing, hotel reservations, car rentals, and restaurant reviews.  You may even find articles reminding you to ask your neighbor to collect your mail for you or to set an “out of office reply” for you work email.

Amidst that flurry of preparation (and there’s a lot to do), don’t forget about getting your home ready for your trip too.

Many people, including myself, love to come home from vacation to a clean home and fresh sheets on the bed.  More than that, though, you want to prepare your home so that you are saving money on utility bills while away on vacation. This is what we are here to talk about today.

5 Steps to Prepare Your Home for Vacation

1. Set the thermostat

While you are aware, adjust the thermostat accordingly.  This means, that if you are taking a trip during the winter months, turn down the heat.  If you are leaving during summertime, turn down the air conditioning.  Keep in mind-when the weather is cold, you want to keep the thermostat set to at least 50-55 degrees in order to prevent frozen pipes.

Have a wi-fi enabled thermostat such as The Nest Learning Thermostat?  Using an app on your mobile advice, you can re-adjust the thermostat on your way home from the airport so the house is nice and cozy (or cool) when you get there!

2. Keep out the phantoms and vampires

Don’t worry-we aren’t suggesting that you start hanging garlic cloves around your home.  We are talking about phantom loads or vampire power.  Defined as,”…the electricity consumed by an electronic device while it is turned off or in standby mode…” phantom loads have been found to be responsible for 10% of your energy bill. (The Spruce)

While you are on vacation you don’t need certain electronics to be ready and waiting for you, so go ahead unplug some of the main ones with phantom power such as microwaves and televisions.

3. Shut the chimney flue

It is SO important to have the chimney flue open when the fireplace is in use, so you may be in the habit of leaving it open.  The thing is, leaving the chimney flue open is letting all that conditioned air (warm or cool) outside of your home and letting that outside air in.  It is a huge money and energy waster.

4. Turn down the hot water heater

The temperature on your hot water heater can be turned down while you are out of town.

5. Purchase electrical timers

It’s smart thinking to leave a light or two on while you are out of town for safety purposes.  However, in order to save energy, put that light on a timer so it only comes on night.

Whew!  Now that you’ve checked everything off your list–safe travels!

Looking for more ways to get your home in energy efficient shape?  Contact FLAME!

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