With the crazy weather we’ve had in the last few weeks, many people are not only feeling the chill of the weather, but they’re also feeling the sting of the financial challenges that high heating bills can cost. These days, it’s extremely important to get the most out of your heat and to find ways to save on utility bills. Your heating system can be a real budget breaker when the weather gets really cold, but there are things you can do! I want to teach you how to save on heating costs.
How to Save on Heating Costs
Alternative Heating Sources
It pays to look into alternative means of heating your home or the room(s) you’re in. Pellet stoves, kerosene heaters, wood stoves, and various types of space heaters all help to augment your hard-working central heating unit. See if you can use one or more of these alternatives in the rooms you use most, keeping the vents closed in the rooms you’re not using. Please keep in mind that if you have a traditional fireplace, you’re probably losing heat up the chimney, so don’t count on using your fireplace as a way to save money.
Change the Filter
I know this sounds crazy, but not only is it one of the easiest things you can do for your heating system, it’s also one of the most important. You should change the filter in your furnace at least every 60 days or even once a month. This keeps the unit running smoothly and efficiently. A dirty filter can result in anything from high electric bills (due to the extra effort the unit has to make to get air through the dirty filter) to a broken-down system. Make sure to check Amazon to find great deals on furnace filters.
Turn It Down
When you’re not in the house, make sure you turn down the heat before you leave. Also, turn it down at night. You can use a space heater in the areas where you’re sleeping if you need to.
If you’re not using a room, shut the heating vent in that room. That way, you won’t be paying to heat rooms you’re not using. If you don’t have the kind of vents you can shut, you can purchase vent covers at home improvement stores.
Check Doors and Windows
Part of saving money on heating bills is making sure your heat isn’t escaping. Windows and doors can have leaks you don’t really notice until it gets cold. Weather stripping is inexpensive and easy to install, and can save a lot of money on heating bills. We’ve also used this Seal and Peel Caulk on our windows and have been quite happy with it.
Use Residual Heat
In the kitchen, when you’re finished baking something in the oven, leave the oven door open a few inches and let the heat escape into the room.
What Not To Wear
If you are hanging around in a t-shirt and shorts and constantly cranking up the heat to feel like summer, you are wasting a lot of heat (plus you’ll look extremely ridiculous if anyone drops by unexpectedly). Dress for the season! Wear several layers, a sweater and thick wool socks. Warm house slippers can help, too.
Your best bet to save money is to use a combination of these tips and tricks. Since my husband and I both work from home, we keep our programmable thermostat set to drop the temperature 12 degrees after everyone goes to school. We use a space heater in our office and that keeps that room warm enough for us and we don’t have to pay to keep the rest of the house warm. We also keep warm throws in our living room so that people can wrap themselves up while watching TV, doing homework, or hanging out. This is my absolute favorite throw and it is oh-so-warm!
Leave a comment if you have other suggestions on how to save on heating costs!