The days are becoming shorter, the air is getting colder, and the leaves are changing color, all of which are obvious signs that winter is near. As the winter’s approaching, you may find yourself spending more time indoors. As the evenings grow darker, you’ll be turning on the lights earlier and turning your heaters on. You could be one of the millions of individuals who still work from home, relying on extra electricity to keep your laptop running and the kettle boiling all day.
All of this, along with growing energy costs, means you’ll be using more energy, which will increase both your carbon footprint and your energy bill.
There are several things you can do to minimize the cost of heating bills down in your home, enhance the efficiency of your heating system, and save money on heating. It’s good to know what factors influence your monthly heating expenses and what alternatives you have for lowering your energy bills.
1. Weatherstrip your doors and windows
Sealing out leaks is a smart place to start if you want to save money on your power bill this winter. Your doors and windows may leak more heat than you think, but adding weather stripping around them can help. Door sweeps also help to seal the gap between your door’s bottom and the door frame.
In addition to securing your home’s windows, you should also inspect each door for leaks. Apply weather strips to any spots from where cold air is entering your home. Weatherstripping keeps the cold winter air out and the warm air in.
2. Switch to a smart thermostat
Your heating expenditures can be drastically reduced by adjusting your thermostat. Lowering the thermostat by up to ten degrees can save you up to 15 percent on heating costs each year.
Bedtime and just before you leave for work are two of the ideal times to lower your thermostat. Try sleeping in a room with a temperature of 63 degrees Fahrenheit. As long as no one will be home during the day, you can wish to turn down the thermostat to 63 degrees or even lower when you leave for work.
3. Have a regular service performed on your system
Would you drive your automobile for years without having it serviced regularly? So, why would you do such a thing to your heating system?! Regular maintenance will guarantee that your system functions efficiently, lowering your energy expenditures once the cold weather arrives. Because your system should last at least ten years, ensuring that it isn’t wasting energy can save you thousands of dollars during its lifetime. This will also extend the life of your system and prevent costly repairs and breakdowns.
4. Upgrade your boiler
If your boiler is more than ten years old, it’s probably time to upgrade to a newer, more efficient type. You may save up to $700 by replacing your old boiler with a new A-rated condensing boiler, which consumes less energy to produce the same amount of heat. Plus, if it’s brand new, you’re less likely to have any problems as the winter season approaches.
5. Check the insulation in your house
Insulation might help you save money on your electric bill in the winter. Insulating your attic is a wonderful place to start because it allows you to store more heat in your living areas. Another common way for heat to escape is via your walls, particularly at electrical outlets and other points where pipes enter your property. Pay special attention to the tilework and piping to prevent heat from escaping and to keep pipes from freezing.
6. Only wash/dry full loads of laundry
One of the most basic energy-saving laundry suggestions is to run full loads whenever possible. Running a small, half load of laundry uses the same amount of energy as a full load. With several loads, you’ll finish up using more energy and water. A better strategy is to just run your machine when it is fully loaded. You’ll use less hot water and run your washer and dryer less frequently. This can result in cost savings.
7. Upgrade your heating controls
Heating and hot water account for more than half of a typical household’s energy cost. Without replacing your boiler, you can upgrade or install heating controls. It’s especially important to consider this if your controls are older than 14 years.
Installing a room thermostat, a programmer, and thermostatic radiator valves, as well as effectively utilizing these controls, might help you save roughly $150 per year.
Installing a smart meter can also help you save energy by informing you how much energy you’re using.
8. LAYER UP
Put on a warm sweater or dressing gown before turning on the heater and notice how you feel. In the cold, it’s advisable to dress in multiple thin layers. This insulates you and makes it easy to add or remove garments as the temperature changes.
It’s also a good idea to use heat-retaining fabrics like wool and fleece. Also, wear socks or slippers to keep your feet warm, as this will help your entire body retain heat.
9. Use Ceiling Fans
Use a ceiling fan to distribute warm air throughout your home and save money on your heating cost during the cold months of the year. During the winter, reverse the fans so that the blades turn clockwise. At the base of the fan, there should be a little switch.
The blades should rotate clockwise to pull air upward, allowing warm air trapped near the ceiling to move down the walls and around the room. Stand beneath the fan to check if the blades are whirling in the right direction. There shouldn’t be any air blowing down on you.
10. Get an Energy Audit
A home energy audit will show you where you are losing heat in your home and will tell you exactly what you need to do to lower your energy expenses. While you can perform an energy audit on your own, it may be more cost-effective to employ an expert to do it for you. An expert would generally have more tools and equipment to acquire a better understanding of your home’s specific areas of concern. They may also be able to implement energy-saving solutions right after the audit. If you’re unsure who to hire for an energy audit, your local electric company can make a recommendation.