How To Lower Your Heating Bill

Posted on Dec 3 2013 - 10:16am by Pamela

Heating Bills

Last winter, the average cost for heating a home was $905. This isn’t chump change when you’re on a budget!

Considering this, you’re likely searching for ways to slash your heating bill in half this winter.

And remember, winter is only weeks away!

Fear not, for the following eight tips can help lower your bill in no time; thus, making your winter less expensive.

Tip one: Diagnose your house for cracks and gaps

If a house has cracks and gaps, you’d best to believe this will make your heating bill high. In fact, it can raise it as much as 30%. The reason for this is cold air is slipping in, which in turn, means you must raise your thermostat in order to get the drafts out of your house.

To begin solving this problem you must first locate the cracks and gaps. Do this by holding an incense stick around the door and window frames. If the smoke either disappears or is blown back into the room, you have a draft in this location.

Get rid of these drafts by purchasing window and door insulation kits. These are plastic films that do a superb job in keeping the heat inside and the cold outside.

Window and door insulation kits are sold online and at local home improvement stores.

Tip two: Buy a “smart thermostat” and save as much as $180 annually

Using a programmable thermostat lowers your heating bill for one simple reason: it allows you to preset temperatures when you’re not home.

Therefore, it’s advised that you decrease your temperature whenever you’re away for a lengthy period of time. You can increase it when you get home.

Tip three: Close the door

If a room is unoccupied, close its door. This eliminates the additional space your heater has to keep warm. And the best part: the less your heater has to work, the more money you can save.

You should, however, keep your bathroom door open. To be exact, open it after baths and showers. This enables the warm, humid air to flow through other parts of the house.

Tip four: Reverse your ceiling fan

Since warm air rises, it’s likely that your ceiling fan is heated. Reverse this heat back down by running your ceiling fan clockwise. This will reduce your heating by 10%.

Tip five: Block winter wind by planting trees

If you’re a tree lover, then you’ll definitely love this tip. Planting trees will create a natural barrier against chilly winter blasts.

Since winds come from the northwest, it’s best to plant a few conifer trees on the north and northwest side of your home. This natural energy saver will reduce your heating costs by as much as 30%.

Tip six: Seal lighting leaks

Did you know that light switches can lose air? It’s true! While you might not think of light switches as having an effect on your heating bill in this capacity, it can – tremendously.

Luckily this dilemma can be solved in less than a minute. Simply unscrew your switch plate, and fit it with an insulating gasket. This item is also available in home improvement stores.

Recessed lighting fixtures are another possible lighting leak. End this problem by unscrewing the round collar around the fixture and caulk it.

Tip seven: Let the sunshine in

The sun is beautiful, so why not invite it into your home? Do so by simply opening your curtains. This warm invitation heats up your home naturally.

Be sure to close your curtains at night when the temperature falls. You especially want to remember this when the temperature falls below freezing!

Tip eight: Buy a humidifier

Keep in mind that humid air feels warmer than dry air (think summer heat waves!). You’ll quickly realize that a humidifier is a good idea for warming your house.

You’ll be able to lower your thermostat by two degrees. Additionally, a humidifier uses less energy than a 100-watt bulb.

Conclusion

No matter how cold this upcoming winter is, there’s no reason you have to pay a huge heating bill. Follow these eight tips and you’ll have a warm, money saving winter!

Photo Credit: Flickr/Images Money

About the Author
Pamela

Pamela “Penlady” Jones is the author of Money Smarts: 107 Tips on How to Save Money . This guide to saving money is available at Amazon.