Eco Tip: Layer Up and Turn Down the Thermostat — Your Wallet and the Earth Will Thank You

Marsha Low, Weavers Way Environment Committee

In our neck of the woods, we can’t get by without heating our homes this time of year. But there’s a question of how much heat we really need to be comfortable.

We all know that keeping your thermostat set high during the winter is bad for the environment and hard on your wallet. This year, challenge yourself to setting your thermostat a few degrees cooler than you’re used to, and find other ways to keep warm. Dressing in layers helps.

It’s also helpful to maintain moist, humid air in the home. Humid air is much warmer than drier air (as we all know, since we suffer through hot, humid summer days!). Because indoor air in winter is typically dry, try these ways to raise the humidity: Cook more meals at home, make tea and other beverages, purchase and use a small humidifier for your bedroom, and air dry your freshly laundered clothes.

This last tip is a favorite of mine, because it saves energy, prolongs the life of your garments (since using the dryer wears them out), and adds moisture to the air. And since indoor air is so dry during winter, your clothes will dry pretty quickly. So layer up and enjoy some tea — perhaps while cozying up with a good book!