10 ways to save on the heating bill
A programmable thermostat can help cut costs on monthly utility bills, as it can help control the temperature while you’re away. (Photo courtesy of Angie’s List member Bill K.)
Keeping your home warm should not leave you broke. Check out the following things you can do to help save on heating costs.
1. Upgrade your insulation
You may know to insulate your attic and outside walls, but insulating floors can help you save a lot of money as well. Insulate over the crawl space, basement and garage to keep more of the heat you are paying for inside your living spaces.
2. Shop around
Take the time to research heating options. Compare oil prices, negotiate prices with your electric company or switch providers if you find one that is more cost efficient.
3. Change filter
Changing a dirty filter can do wonders for your heating bill. Dirty filters not only make your furnace work harder, increasing the cost you pay for heat, it can also decrease the life of the furnace due to unnecessary wear and tear.
4. Turn down the thermostat
Set the thermostat down 10 degrees when you go to work and when you go to bed to save big on your bill. You can also invest in a programmable thermostat to automatically adjust the temperature throughout the day and night.
5. Seal all energy leaks
Wrap heating ducts and seal any gaps around pipes or wires to stop your heat from leaking out. Caulk baseboards, use weather stripping and reseal window glass if necessary. Window film is another way to boost the efficiency of your windows. The film decreases energy loss and reflects sunlight to help retain solar heat.
6. Schedule an energy audit
Contact your utility company to schedule an energy audit. This free or very low cost option will help you see what can be done to help decrease your heating cost.
7. Replace windows
While replacing windows can be a big expense, high-efficiency windows will save you a lot of money on your bill over time.
8. Service or replace furnace
A clean furnace runs more efficiently, so schedule an appointment to have it serviced. It may also be time to upgrade your furnace. Older furnaces cost more to use than new, energy efficient models. If your furnace is over 20 years old, it is smart to choose a product that will save energy.
9. Turn the fans on
Take advantage of your ceiling fans. Set on low speed, the fan will push hot air down to help your room feel warmer.
10. Decorate for warmth
Consider rearranging your furniture and adding decorative elements to increase the warmth in your home. Move large furniture away from exterior walls and make sure vents are clear to allow air to circulate. Use insulated curtains on your windows, throw rugs and switch to flannel sheets for a cozier environment.