Every year it seems the costs for heating your home go up and up. And every year, we find ourselves looking for ways to conserve heat and lower our heating bills. After all, heating our home adds up to about half of our monthly energy bills.
This year the forecast predicts a colder than average winter, along with rising energy costs, which means you can expect your heating bills to increase by hundreds of dollars.
- Natural Gas – People heating with natural gas can expect their heating costs to rise 30% (on average) due to the increase in gas prices
- Electricity – People who use electric heat can expect their heating costs to rise 6% (on average)
- Propane – People who use propane for heating can expect their heating cost to rise 46% (on average)
Now, it is more important than ever to look for ways to conserve heat this winter to reduce these expected rising costs. Thankfully there are several tips to help; many are low cost or no cost to you.
Keep the heat inside your home
One of the best ways to save on your heating bills this winter is to make sure your home is not leaking heat outside.
An excellent place to start is with our windows and doors. Both of these places let out close to 30% of our homes heat. Caulking and using weather stripping can help seal any gaps at your windows and doors, reducing heat loss.
Sealing around electrical outlets, attic hatches, baseboard heaters, etc., can reduce drafts and save you up to 10 or 20 percent on your heating bill.
You can do more than just sealing your windows to help with rising heat costs.
Use a quality window film to seal your windows to minimize the amount of draft coming thru your windows.
On sunny days, open the curtains and allow the sunshine to help boost the temp inside your home. Then, at night, be sure you close the curtains to help hold heat inside.
Turning the thermostat down
We hear turning the thermostat down helps, and it does. For example, if you lower your thermostat by 10 degrees when you are sleeping and are gone during the day, you may save 10% on your overall heating costs. This can significantly impact the overall costs of heating your home this winter.
Look up your chimney
Using a fireplace is a great way to help provide heat in your home. However, it is vital to double-check that the chimney flue is closed when not in use. An open flue allows warm air to leave your home right up the chimney. If you have an older chimney that does not have a flue, you can install vents/doors to help seal the airway.
Another vent to make sure you keep closed when not in use is exhaust fans in your kitchen and bathroom.
Tune-up your furnace
Keeping your furnace in tip-top shape is another great way to ensure it is heating your home efficiently. Schedule an annual furnace tune-up every spring. The technician will give it a thorough going over, ensuring that it is operating at max efficiency. The more efficient your furnace is working, the lower your heating costs will be.
Try these tips
Try any of these handy tips to help keep you warm this winter.