As temperatures drop each winter, it’s customary to feel a pinch in the pocket as heating costs rise. That probably leaves you wondering how to save money on heat.
Heating bills can be unpredictable, so you might struggle to save money on a low income or during tough times.
It’s not uncommon to see your home heating bill jump. But, according to the U.S. Department of Energy, there are several things you can do to help reduce your heating bill as well as the consumption of energy resources.
Most of these tips either focus on making lifestyle changes or how you use your heating system to make it more effective and less costly.
So let’s look at the 7 best ways you can save money on the heat in winter!
1. Turn down your thermostat.
If you’re not already familiar with HVAC terminology, you might be surprised to learn how much of your home’s heating comes down to one component that is responsible for keeping your house warm. That component? Your thermostat.
Turning down the thermostat is the most effective method to conserve energy. It may feel nice to hold the home warm, so you don’t have to bundle up as much. However, it is shown that you can conserve as much as ten percent on annual heating bills by turning down the thermostat every day.
2. Stay on the lookout for leaks.
Your home might lose warmth through windows and doors, especially if those openings aren’t closed properly. At the beginning of winter, it is a very good idea to check all of the windows and doorways in your house for air leaks.
You should call the experts if you suspect your home has air leakage problems. A blower door test can reveal whether or not your home is letting in too much cold air during the winter months. You may also wish to insulate and seal the inside of your home against heat loss yourself.
3. Use renewable energy for heating.
To reduce energy consumption, you should consider investing in solar panels. They could be installed on your roof or elsewhere. Solar power may help lower your heating bills depending on where you live.
Solar handles electricity output. Therefore, it doesn’t seem that going solar could impact your heating bills. However, if you run an entirely electricity-based heating system, you won’t have to pay any gas bills related to heating.
4. Install smart systems
Following the first tip in this article, you can lower the temperature before you leave home, and you will get used to a slightly lower temperature by the time you reach home. Using smart heating systems also gives you the perk of changing temperature automatically at certain times of the day, so you’re saving money even if you forget about it.
You may not realize how much power your furnace is sucking from our electric grid. According to a recent study commissioned by the U.S. Department of Energy, if your home’s furnace was as efficient as newer models, you could save around $200 per year. This means saving the average household around $2,400 in annual energy costs!
5. Make a few lifestyle changes.
These likely won’t drastically reduce your heating bills, but they could help keep your house warmer throughout the winter without forcing you into constantly using your heater.
Open your window shades or curtains to allow sunlight into your home during the day, as sunlight is one of the main ways homes can heat up. Baking or cooking at home can also provide warmth during these cold days.
Ensure you have draught stoppers on your doors, so heated air doesn’t escape indoors. Clear out your heating vents of dust and debris and ensure they aren’t blocked. An efficient portable heater can provide additional warmth in areas that conventional heating methods cannot reach.
Although these sound like small steps, making these lifestyle changes can significantly add to your savings during winter.
6. Save on electricity too!
Since electric and heating bills are often billed together, you could save money by keeping your electricity bills in check.
By comparing electricity usage between one month and another, you’ll notice that if your electricity consumption goes down, so does your heating bill. It would help if you took advantage of these savings because they accumulate.
Energy monitors help you identify the largest energy hogs in your home, so you can find ways to cut back on them. Use smart plug devices that allow you to monitor energy usage via an app, so you’ll know exactly how much power each appliance consumes and where you can save it.
7. Use space heaters or humidifiers
Sometimes, you may wish to provide additional heat to an area of your house without heating the rest of the house. For example, if you spend all your time sleeping in one room, you can place a space heater in that room to help maintain a comfortable temperature there without having to heat the whole house.
Another low-cost method to hack your home’s thermostat is to use a humidifier. Humidified air feels warmer than dryer air, even if the temperatures are the same. Running a little humidifier in the rooms where you spend most of your time can help improve your comfort levels without increasing energy costs.
You can use one or all of these methods to save money on your heating bills in winter. However, the best option here is to stay bundled up and keep yourself warm with clothing, whether in the house or outdoors. Hopefully, there will be fewer heating bills for all of us when the winter comes this year!