6 Little Known Ways to Reduce Your Heating Bill

6 Little Known Ways to Reduce Your Heating Bill


How to save money on heat.

The months of December through March can have a big impact on your budget. And it isn’t just celebrating Christmas that can pressure your budget. Your heating bill is the big factor here — a seasonal expense that can make it difficult for many of us to make ends meet. Short of a costly renovation project involving the installation of new, energy efficient windows, there are some little known ways for you to reduce your heating bill.

1. Open and shut — During the winter months, open the curtains in rooms that get sunlight to allow your home to heat up naturally. As the sun goes down, close the curtains and draw the drapes to retain heat.

2. Keep vents clean — An inefficient running furnace will cost you money. Likely, you already know this and schedule regular tune ups. What you might neglect is keeping vents clean, something that is usually as simple as changing the furnace and/or vent filters regularly. Clogged filters can make the furnace work less efficiently, requiring you to set the thermostat on a higher setting.

3. Shorten your showers — Do you bathe every day? If so, the amount of time you spend in the shower will affect your heating bill. Take shorter showers and sponge bathe yourself on alternate days. You’ll reduce your heating bill and you’ll avoid another problem that comes along every winter: dry skin.

4. Use cold water wash only — Warm water and washing clothing is so 20th century. And so unnecessary. What gets clothing clean is the detergent, not the temperature. Wash with full loads only and use cold water exclusively.

5. Wear a hat. Indoors. — You know the importance of donning a hat when you step out in the cold. Why not wear a hat inside too? Although scientists have debunked the myth that 45 percent of your body heat exits through the top of your head, 10 percent may still leave that way. In any case, a hat will make you feel warmer which means you can lower the thermostat a degree or two.

6. Get on a budget plan — This method won’t save you money directly, but it will spread your heating costs throughout the year, even when the first heat wave hits next summer. Contact your heating supplier and ask about being placed on a budget that will estimate your costs for the year and spread that amount evenly over 12 months. For example, if you spend $3,000 per year to heat your home, you’ll pay $250 per month ‘year round. That beats the $600 to $800 per month you pay during the winter months.

Other ways to reduce your heat are the ones you already know about. These include: placing plastic on windows, insulating pipes, installing an electronic thermostat and turning off kitchen and bathroom fans as soon as they’ve finished the job. How much money can you save? That’s hard to say. Much depends on your personal habits and the costs you incur from your heating company each month.



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Categories: Energy Savings

About Author

Matthew C. Keegan

Matt Keegan is a freelance writer and editor as well as publisher of "Auto Trends Magazine", an online publication. Matt covers campus, consumer, business and financial topics on various websites and weblogs, and has been published in the "Houston Chronicle", "Sam's Club Magazine" and "Wisconsin Golfer".