With October nearly over and November right on its heels, chances are high that your family will be turning on your heat soon if you haven’t already. While there’s nothing better than snuggling up in a warm house as the snow falls outside, keeping your home a warm and cozy temperature can become costly quickly. Don’t spend a fortune heating your home. Here are seven ways to save on your home heating this winter.
1. Open the Blinds
If you’ve ever opened your blinds wide to enjoy the sunshine, you know that letting the light in can really heat up your home. Wintertime is the perfect time to use this to your advantage. Open the blinds during the day, especially on the side of your house that faces the sun. You’ll feel warmer in no time, and it doesn’t cost a thing!
2. Dress Warmly
Just because you can crank your heat and wear shorts all day doesn’t mean that you should. Dress warmly, including socks and warm sweaters. Leave cozy throw blankets out where they’ll invite you to snuggle up. Put an extra blanket on your bed. You’ll be able to turn down the heat and still be comfortable.
3. Adjust Your Ceiling Fans
Did you know that you are supposed to switch the direction your ceiling fans turn seasonally? It’s true. In the winter, your ceiling fans should run clockwise in order to gently push the warm air that floats to the ceiling back down again.
4. Check for Leaks
According to HouseLogic.com, the average family wastes $350 every year due to air leaks alone. Common places for air leaks include around doors, windows, fireplaces and sockets. Go through your home looking for leaks, and fill them with insulation, spray foam or weather stripping. The process is pretty simple, and you can find everything you need at your local home improvement store.
5. Invest in More Insulation
In addition to small leaks, your home may have large areas that are not well-insulated as well. While the heat may not seep out as fast in these areas, if the areas are large, you could still be out a substantial amount of money. Insulation is relatively cheap, and putting it up isn’t too difficult. Even a roll or two added to the attic can help.
6. Use a Space Heater
If your family spends the vast majority of your time in one or two rooms, it doesn’t make much sense to heat the entire house. Instead, turn the heat on as low as you can and then use a space heater in the rooms you frequent. You’ll stay nice and warm at a fraction of the cost.
7. Get Regular HVAC Maintenance as Needed
For those of us trying to live frugally, putting off home maintenance and repairs can be very tempting. Yet, some amount of regular HVAC maintenance is necessary to keep your system clean and running well. Otherwise, you’ll be wasting a ton of energy because the system is too dirty and inefficient to heat your home properly.
At the very least, you should change your furnace air filter every couple of months, or as often as every month if you have pets or allergies in your family. If your heat doesn’t seem to be keeping up, however, or if you are spending way more than you should, larger maintenance and repairs may be in order.
How painful are your home heating bills? Do you follow any of these steps to reduce your bills, or do you just crank the heat and not worry about it? What other tips work well for you?