An American family spends $1500 per annum on heating bills while those using methane expect costs to surge.
How to reduce rising energy bills as oil prices are beyond control? Experts advocate making your house more energy-efficient with various suggestions ranging from simple swaps to big investments for controlling the dreaded winter energy bills.
You can slash your heating bill by hiring a professional annually to inspect your furnace, costing from $80 to $200 to identify needed repairs. Replace your air filter when winter begins and again during colder months. Air filters cost $15, but upgraded ones range from $20 to $30 and assist break even, ensuring efficiency and longer lasting units. It pays to fix leaks in duct work to save hundreds of dollars a year as about 30 % of heated air is lost to leaks in ductwork.
BETTER HOME INSULATION
Ensure sealing all cracks in the home and feel for cold drafts around the pipes, doors, cable and electrical outlets, and windows. Inexpensive outlet sealers and draft blockers fixes these problem areas. Ensure your door and window stripping are in good condition, as when it gets cold out, these building materials shrink. A professional seals cracks around windows and doors for about $250, or spend a weekend doing it yourself.
Shrink wrapping windows in plastic for the winter is not very pretty, but effective. If built before 1980, your home insulation definitely needs an upgrade. Insulation problems arise if icicles are created or snow melts quickly off the roof. Sealing cracks saves 10% of monthly costs while drawing all blinds at night, prevents 10% loss in room heat. Such subtle habit changes reduce energy bills.
LOWER THE THERMOSTAT
Most Americans are spending more by maintaining homes at very warm temperatures. The ideal home temperature is 68 degrees during the day, lowered to 60 degrees at night. If too cold, use extra blankets. Thermostat wars do occur in many families but heating costs are lowered. Shutting heat off if no one is home during work day also reduces costs and a smart thermostat helps. Program start about 30 minutes before you get home to save 20% on your monthly bill and break even on a smart thermostat purchase during the first year.
SMART ALTERNATIVE HEATING METHODS
Use fireplaces very sparingly as a roaring fire does not efficiently heat a home. While great for ambience, ensure your flue is closed when not in use and don’t forget to shut the damper. Apart from invading pests, it allows hot air to escape and cold air sneaks in. Ensure a well- sealed chimney. A humidifier keeps you warm without raising heating bills. We remove humidity from the house in summer because water holds heat but in winter, more air humidity is needed. Moist air is warmer than dry air and using a humidifier when the heat is on, also reduces your heating bill and pesky static electricity.
EXPLORE BUDGET BILLING POSSIBILITIES
Utility providers estimate your bill by past usage and permit average cost estimations payable monthly, enabling better budget control without saving energy or money. Some providers offer time-based energy usage plans to avoid using electricity at peak times and reduce peak system demand.