Things You Can Do Your Own To Reduce Heating Bills

No, ‘stop paying your heating bills’ is not the correct answer.

cast iron heater.
Keeping your home warm during winter can be a struggle if not correctly done which can lead to a very high electricity bill. There are many installations a person can invest in which will ensure that one’s home stays nice and warm on those chilly days, and most of them are a significant long-term investment that pays off eventually. But besides from the more expensive investments, there are other things you can do yourself that will help keep the heat inside and the heating bill low.

Drafts and air leaks
If you are going to heat up by any means during winter, you obviously want all that lovely heat concentrated in your home and not escaping. Proper air sealing should be maintained throughout your home which can help eliminate those drafts.
• Replace WornWeatherstripping — If you don’t have weatherstrippings around your doors and windows, it is maybe time to get some or to replace the worn-out ones. Seven to twelve percent of the heat can get lost if you do not seal these areas with weatherstrippings.
• The threshold under the door — Daylight seen under your front door is an indication that the opening is too broad and heat will most likely get lost in this area. Buy a door weatherstripping threshold that allows you to adjust the height so that you can eliminate the gap between the door and the floor.
• Electrical Boxes — Some electrical boxes in the exterior walls might be drafty due to insulation not being placed correctly behind them. You can stop the air from flowing around and thought the box by covering them with plates. Small gaps around the boxes can be filled with acrylic latex caulk. A foam gasket can be placed over outlets and switches.
• Holes in exterior walls — Gaps are often found around pipes, gas lines, and electrical cables and cold air can seek through them. Some might be filled with some caulk which can crack, peel and fall off. Expanding foam can be used to solve this problem.

Programmable thermostat

If no one is in the room, then heating is a waste. If you invest in a programmable thermostat, it will automatically adjust the room temperature as needed. A Smart thermostat can also help you monitor the energy use throughout the house which can help you use the heating more wisely.

Air filters
If you make use of a heat and air conditioning system, then you should replace the filters at least every three months. Dirty filters can make it harder for air to circulate and to ensure maximum efficiency. These filters should be cleaned, otherwise it will add to the expenses.

Water heaters
During winter time, the water heater will be working extra hard to warm up the water inside. If you have a water heater that can be adjusted, you can turn it off when no one is at home during an extended period. During the day when you are not at home, you can also turn the heating down and then back up again when you return. By doing this, you can help lessen the use of electricity.

In the kitchen
If you are planning on baking, do so at the times when it is the coldest in your home as baking can provide you with extra heat. No need to open the windows for baking. By not letting that heat from the oven escape through the windows you might even accumulate enough heat, and there will be no need to turn on the heating system for the time being.

Portable heaters
You can turn down the furnace that is heating the entire house and use a portable heater instead in the room that is being most occupied. By just using a small heater in the area that you are gathering and minimizing the temperature of the furnace, you are sure to save a lot of money on electricity.

Windows and Patio Doors
The best is, of course, to invest in double glazed windows, but if it does not fit your budget, you can always use transparent plastic film to cover the windows and sliding doors of the patio.
The transparent film is inexpensive and is a cheap way to save on your heating bill. When the spring arrives, the film can be easily removed.

Chimney
Fireplaces are a great way to heat your home, but if it is not being used, the open space makes it easy for air to escape through the chimney. Of course, the best way to take care of this is to close the area. The best solution for this problem is to get an inflatable chimney balloon. It is easy to install, as you only have to blow up the balloon and stick it in the chimney.

Attic hatches
Even if your attic is well insulated, which is essential for your home to be more energy efficient, the loss of warm air can still take place through the attic hatch. The idea is to prevent air accessing your attic. Therefore, the attic door needs to be well insulated as well, forming a good seal. For the side of the attic door, you can use adhesive to attach fiberglass batt insulation. Air ducts in the attic and even the basement should be taken care of by sealing them with mastic sealant or metal tape which will avoid air leak.

Use your logic
Saving on your heating bill takes more than just installing the latest technology, it also depends on the way you think. By using different methods of keeping warm, you will avoid overheating. Dress up warm if you don’t mind being covered in layers, snuggle up with a hot water bottle when you are not on the move. Leave the curtains open during the day to allow sunlight to heat your home and close them to keep that heat trapped at night. Trimming trees around the windows that is blocking that sunlight might also be a good idea. Keep heated areas closed when heating a specific area. Radiators and heaters should be kept away from heat absorbers like couches or drapes to ensure that the heat circle throughout the area.

By applying some of these simple methods to your home when the winters arrive you can help lower the heating. Even if you are planning on making bigger investments like solar panels, insulation or double-glazed windows, these methods are some good habits to get used to.

Posted in: 2. Tenant Blog Posts, Maintenance, Rental Living, Saving Money

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