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5 Tricks for Lower Wintertime Energy Bills

hand setting schedule on thermostat

According to Energy Star, heating is the most expensive portion of the typical home’s annual energy costs. That’s right: if you’re like most homeowners, your home’s heating costs make up about 29% of your energy bills. That’s more money than it costs both to heat your water and use your home’s major appliances.

The good news is that if you’re looking to shrink your heating costs, there are multiple ways to do it. Use these tips below to make your wintertime energy bills lower than ever!

Tip #1: Change your air filter frequently.

What does your HVAC system’s air filter have to do with energy use? The air filter acts as a gatekeeper into your system, blocking large dust particles and airborne debris from entering the equipment. Eventually, all those pollutants that the filter is keeping out can clog the filter. Now, not only is the filter keeping out pollutants, but it’s also blocking air into your system.

When your HVAC system doesn’t have enough air flowing through it, it will take longer to heat or cool your home. The longer the system runs, the more energy it uses, and the higher your energy bills rise.

Tip #2: Get your heating system tuned up.

Just like getting your car tuned up before a cross-country road trip, it’s wise to get professional maintenance for your heating system before winter temperatures put it to the test. Keep in mind that your heater has had a lot of time to accumulate dust over the warmer months of the year, and that grimy dust will affect how effectively the machinery runs and how efficiently the fuel burns.

Tip #3: Keep your vents open.

As mentioned above, adequate airflow is a crucial factor in an efficient HVAC system. When you intentionally close air vents or accidentally block them with rugs or furniture, that warm air does not get redirected to a room that “needs it more.” Instead, you’re allowing air pressure to build up in your ductwork, which results in an imbalanced system that is drawing in more air than it’s allowed to push out.

Not only is an imbalanced system less efficient, but the increasing air pressure in the ductwork can create leaks in the duct joints. The leakier your air ducts are, the more warm air you’ll lose inside your walls and attic, and the longer it will take to heat your home. You can end up running your heating system for an extremely long time just to make up for leaky air ducts. The end result is an expensive energy bill.

Tip #4: Use window coverings to control heat.

Using your blinds and curtains strategically during winter can do wonders for your energy bills. If you have sun-facing windows, leave the window coverings open during daylight hours so that sunlight can stream in and help warm the rooms for free. Once the sun goes down, don’t waste time closing your curtains and blinds to prevent the heat inside your home from transferring outside.

Tip #5: Never turn your heating system off completely.

Many people make the mistake of turning their heater off when they leave their homes for the day. While this might seem like a money-saver, you’re only giving your heater a lot of work to do once you get home, and all that work is going to require a lot of energy.

Your heater will spend less energy maintaining a relatively warm temperature in your home throughout the day than it will overcoming a huge temperature drop all at once. Therefore, instead of shutting the system off completely, set the thermostat to a temperature lower than 68°F if you’ll be away from home for a while or if you’re heading to bed. According to the Department of Energy, you’ll easily shave money off your winter energy bills this way.

Milford Heating Services

As a family-owned and operated company, providing reliable service to our customers is our top priority. For all your heating needs in Milford, contact Tri-City Heating and Cooling today at (203) 303-5700.