Living in the Midwest, you know that finding ways to manage heating costs is a priority every winter. In fact, heating costs often comprise well over half of a homeowner’s total energy budget, so it’s wise to figure out how you can reduce heating costs, without impacting home comfort.
There are a variety of ways to effect change in heating costs, and not all of them cost a fortune. In fact, several are free. Choose one, or several, from the list below and get started:
- Adjust your home’s temperature. If you can stay comfortable and lower your thermostat, even just one degree, on a regular basis, you can expect savings. Energy Savers estimates that the average homeowner can save one percent on heating costs with every degree the home temperature is lowered.
- Schedule setbacks. Do you have a programmable thermostat? Use it — or install one — to schedule regular temperature setbacks, which allow you to increase savings. When should you do this? At night — when you’re sleeping — and during the day — whenever the home is unoccupied.
- Use exhaust fans sparingly. Did you know that an exhaust fan can drain a home of its heated air in just an hour? Run them briefly during and directly after showering or cooking to get rid of odors and humidity, but don’t leave them on for a long time.
- Check your water heater’s temperature. Many systems are pre-set at 140 degrees, an energy-consuming, and unnecessarily high, temperature. A setting of 120 degrees will get you the same results, and save energy.
- Upgrade insulation and seal air leaks. Making sure your home’s heat barrier and seal are effectively preventing heat loss will go a long way toward ensuring efficiency.
- Want big results? Upgrade your heating system, and choose a high-efficiency furnace. Look for ratings above 90 Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency (AFUE).
Want to decrease heating costs this year — and permanently? Start with just one of the tips provided above, and implement more as you go. Ernst Heating & Cooling is here to help. Just give us a call today, and we’ll help you to assess your home’s energy efficiency, and develop an energy-saving strategy that’s customized for your Metro-East area home.
Our goal is to help educate our customers about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about heating costs and other HVAC topics, visit our blog.