Heating costs for the average home typically take up almost half of the utility bills, so it’s no secret that you’d like to find any way you can to reduce these costs. Along with purchasing the most reliable and energy efficient heating system, there are some minor adjustments that you can make in your home to help lower your heating bills. When you take steps to improve the efficiency of your entire home, you also increase the effectiveness and life of your heating system.
The most cost–effective way to improve energy efficiency and save on heating bills is to make sure your home is properly insulated and sealed. Any place your home loses heat will increase your heating costs because your heater has to work even harder to maintain warm temperatures throughout the house. If you have an older home, you may need better insulation in places where heat can escape easily. Attics and crawlspaces are typically the places where older homes lose a significant amount of heat, so make sure you have plenty of insulation in any of these spaces.
Sealing off any doors or windows that have air leaks with weather stripping, caulk, or a plastic covering makes a sizeable difference in preventing heat loss. But heat can also escape through smaller holes and cracks around pipes, wiring, ductwork, vents, and electrical fixtures. Although it might seem minor, sealing these air leaks with caulk or spray foam will also make a difference in your heating bill. Ultimately, you want to make sure that you seal and insulate any areas that create exposure to the outside of the home, or the places where you can physically feel a draft.
Turning down your thermostat when you leave the house is one of the simplest ways to save on heating costs. You can purchase digital thermostats that allow you to program the times when you want the heat turned up or down according to your schedule. Depending on the brand and settings, these can be fairly inexpensive. When you are home, wear extra clothing or throw a heavy blanket over your bed at night so that you keep the thermostat at a reasonable temperature. Closing the vents and doors to any unused rooms or spaces is another simple way to avoid wasting heat.
Heating System Efficiency
Whenever you buy a new heating system, try to select the most energy efficient system for your home. Ask a qualified HVAC professional for advice if you aren’t sure which heater is the best for your home. They can provide you with information about saving energy or the different types of energy–efficient heating systems that we offer. If you plan on installing a brand new heater, it might be a good idea to also think about upgrading to double–paned windows or adding insulated storm doors and windows. The more you can prevent heat loss, the more efficiently your new heating system will heat your home and help you save money on heating costs.
Routine Heating System Maintenance
As a homeowner, you can increase the efficiency of your heating system with some minor routine maintenance tasks. Replace your furnace filters once a month, or every three months depending on the type of filter. Clean or dust any of the accessible components of your heating system on a regular basis, and vacuum out your vents at least once a year. A dirty heating system is a less efficient system. In addition to keeping your system clean, check for any rust, leaks, or obvious issues that might keep your system from running at optimal levels. Make sure to schedule a routine maintenance visit with a skilled heating technician at least once a year so that they can test the performance of your heater and give it a professional cleaning.