Winter is officially here, and cold weather in the area is nothing to joke about. When temperatures drop, the freezing cold can affect health as much as comfort, and a reliable heating system becomes absolutely essential. Homeowners become accustomed to paying higher monthly heating bills in the winter, since everyone runs their heaters much more often. But just because people pay more in heating costs during cold weather doesn’t mean they should pay more than is absolutely necessary. Prudent homeowners can find easy ways to improve home energy efficiency and lower their monthly bills in the process.
Some steps are simple, such as setting the thermostat a few degrees lower than normal and wearing warm clothes in the house. Others, however, can be a bit more involved. A brief list of suggestions is included below.
Use Programmable Thermostats
Most home thermostats are programmable, but many homeowners don’t use the feature for various reasons. It’s a common fallacy that running the heat all day in an empty home uses less energy than turning it on at the end of the day and waiting for the house to warm up. Homeowners can do both by using the programming features. Set the thermostat to lower to 65°F when the last person leaves the house for the day, then program it to raise the heat twenty minutes before the first family member arrives home. The house will be toasty warm and comfortable–and heating bills will drop tremendously.
In addition, it the thermostat is more than ten years old, consider replacing it with a new “smart” thermostat. These thermostats can analyze heating and cooling patterns, as well as local weather conditions and make micro adjustments that can shave precious dollars off of the bill.
Seal Cracks with Weather Stripping
Cracks around doors and windows can cause heated air to leak out of the home in the winter and cool air in the summer. Weather stripping makes a fast and easy solution to the problem. It can be purchased at any hardware store or home improvement center and applied in minutes without any training or special skills, but it can improve the home’s ability to retain heating and conditioned air quite well.
Get Heaters Regularly Maintained
Heating repairs are unpleasant, but in many cases they can be avoided (or at least mitigated) with a little forethought. No one wants to deal with a breakdown in the middle of a cold front. Regular maintenance on the heating system gives the technician a chance to spot repair issues early and schedule repairs to fix them. More importantly, maintenance involves automatically correcting little issues such as loose bolts and clogged burners that can rob the heater of efficiency. When conducted at least once a year, maintenance inspections and tune-ups can improve the heater’s efficiency demonstrably–lowering monthly bills in the process–as well as reducing wear and tear to help the system last longer.
For heater repair issues throughout the Rye, NY area, call on the friendly professionals at Yost & Campbell Heating, Cooling & Generators today!