5 Tips for Reducing Heating Costs This Winter

(LibertySons.org) – Late fall and the onset of winter allow people to experience fun activities associated with harvests and cooler weather, including corn mazes, pumpkin patches, hay rides, snowball fights, ice skating, and even sleigh rides. Yet, as winter nights grow longer and colder and heating bills increase, consumers may search for ways to reduce their heating costs, especially as energy costs rise. Here are some tried and true methods that can help.

  1. Lower The Thermostat. By decreasing the thermostat from seven to 10 degrees lower, people could see savings of up to 10% per year, according to the Department of Energy. Consumers in milder climates typically see more significant cost savings than those in severe areas.

Consider using a programmable thermostat to lower the temperature even more at night while everyone sleeps or during the day when everyone is away at work or school. By programming the thermostat to increase the temperature about an hour before people wake in the morning or come home in the late afternoon or evening, consumers can realize even greater cost savings.

  1. Wear More Layers. When decreasing the thermostat settings, most consumers will find themselves more comfortable if they add layers of clothing. Even indoors, wear socks and slippers or shoes, sweaters or sweatshirts, or even long underwear. Also, consider wearing a cap inside to minimize personal heat loss. Using knitted throws and fleece blankets can also help people feel cozy.
  1. Use a Space Heater. For those who work from home or spend a lot of time in one spot in the house, consider using a space heater in concert with the lowered thermostat settings. This suggestion works especially well for those who work in smaller or more contained areas. Always use a space heater with safety features like an adjustable thermostat, tip-over protection, auto safety shutoff system, and a cool-touch exterior. Never leave a space heater running unattended.
  1. Optimize Your Heating System. An annual checkup on your heating and air-conditioning system is a good idea. Whether your heating system runs on electricity, gas, fuel oil, or a boiler system, periodic maintenance is necessary. For forced air systems, that includes periodically changing air filters to improve air quality and flow.
  1. Increase the Home’s Insulation. There are two ways of accomplishing this goal. First, consumers can simply add more insulation to homes and ensure doors and windows are well sealed. Alternatively, consumers can replace existing insulation with better insulation.

Using any of these tips could help consumers save money on heating bills, but using several could considerably reduce costs this winter. Consider checking out the Federal Trade Commission Consumer Advice page for more tips about saving money on heating and cooling bills.

~Here’s to Our Liberty!

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