The price of oil and natural gas may be at an all-time low right now, but that doesn’t mean that your energy bill looks much friendlier once the winter weather sets in and you find yourself turning your home heating system on full blast.
Here are just a few tips to get you started:
- If your home isn’t well insulated (or if you don’t even know if it’s insulated at all), a good way to start making your home more energy-efficient is to replace (or install for the first time) some insulation in areas where drafts are most likely to sneak through. This is a fairly easy Do-It-Yourself project if you don’t mind spending the time, and any major home repair store will have plenty of products designed to fit underneath door frames, around window frame cracks, and (safe) covers for electrical outlets.
- If you have a big house but you only use a few rooms, try turning down your home heating system, and putting space heaters in the rooms that you actually use. Be careful to use heaters that are safe for indoor use, and try not to leave the space heater running when no one is around.
- Finally, if you don’t already have a programmable thermostat in your house, go out and buy one! The newer “smart” thermostats may be a bit expensive, but a regular programmable thermostat is usually around $25 to $30, and if the U.S. Department of Energy did its math correctly, it will take no time for the thermostat to pay for itself: research shows that homeowners who turn down their home heating systems by 10 to 15 degrees for at least eight hours per day end up saving about 10% on their heating bills.
There are tons of sneaky little ways to make your home heating and cooling system a bit more energy-efficient (and friendlier to your bank account, in the process), and it never hurts to call in a home heating repair service or local furnace repair company to take a look at your home and assess if anything needs to mended or replaced. More on this topic.