One of the rougher parts of winter is having to look at your utility bills each month. Powering home heating systems costs money, and when you have to regularly run your furnace, heat pump, or other heater, you’ll see it reflected on your monthly energy bills.
But if you’ve thought to yourself that the costs seem too high, then this is the blog post for you. Most homeowners pay more for their heating than they should, and by taking a few steps, they can cut down on the high cost of winter comfort. Here’s our guide to getting those heating costs down to something less intimidating to see on your bills.
Schedule professional maintenance for your heating system.
When was the last time you had annual maintenance for your heating system? If it’s been several years, or you haven’t had it done at all, we’re not surprised you’re paying so much to heat your home. The wear and tear that accumulates on a heater each year it misses maintenance can mean a 5% increase per annum. That adds up!
Call us right away and arrange for a maintenance visit—and then keep up with it each year. You’ll help your heater in many other ways as well, such as avoiding unnecessary heating repair in Eden Prairie, MN.
Lower the thermostat and keep it steady.
Just because you can turn your thermostat up to a high temperature doesn’t mean you should. In fact, we recommend you lower your thermostat. The lower the temperature in your house, the slower it loses heat to the outside.
Find the lowest setting that’s comfortable for you and your family and make sure to wear an extra layer of clothing. We recommend aiming for 68°F, one of the best energy-saving settings. Keep this temperature steady during the day when people are home, and lower it further at night or when the house is empty.
Make use of the sunlight.
The sun is free heat energy—are you making the best use of it? Open the blinds and shutters on east and west-facing windows when the sun is striking them and you’ll enjoy radiant heat that makes a significant difference. When the sun isn’t striking those windows, pull down the blinds or close the shutters to slow down the escape of heat through the windows.
Regularly change the HVAC filter.
Too many people forget this important regular task: every 1–3 months, replace the air filter in the HVAC system for a clean one. If a dirty filter is left in place, it will force the heating system to work harder. If you still have the same filter in place since the start of fall, you’re overdue to change it!
Know when to let go of your heating system.
If those bills seem strangely high, consider the age of your heating system. Even with the best maintenance and prompt repairs, a heater that’s over its service life estimate will start to lose energy efficiency rapidly. (A gas furnace, for example, that’s older than 15 years is past its prime.) This is when the best way to save energy is to replace the heating system. You’ll also save yourself money on repairs and have a safer heating system.