If you’ve experienced what has been described as the dreaded polar vortex where you live, then you know how difficult it can be to heat your home. Even if you live in a newer home, it can be a challenge to heat your entire home without experiencing extremely high utility bills. Let’s talk about some ways you can more efficiently heat your home without breaking the bank.

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System maintenance

If you are trying to heat your home with an HVAC system that is not operating as optimally, you essentially have money going out through your roof. Yearly maintenance on your home’s heating and air conditioning systems is a must. If you have a separate furnace, it needs to be serviced before the winder months begin. At the start of fall you should have a professional company come out and do a tune up on your system. They will check to be sure that all components are working correctly and are not in any danger of going out during the upcoming season. Using companies like Balance Point Heating & Air Conditioning you will guarantee an expert furnace repair service. Be sure you check the reviews of any company you hire to be sure they can be trusted.

Use programmable thermostats

Thermostats control the your heating units by telling it the temperature you’d like your house to reach. A simple thermostat has that one setting. The great thing about a programmable thermostat is that you can tell it not only the temperature you’d like, but you can give it different temperatures and time frames you’d like for those temperatures. For instance; when you’re out of the house at work, you can set the thermostat for a cooler temperature so you won’t be wasting electricity heating the house while no one is home. Then, an hour before you arrive home, you can have the temperature increased to be nice and toasty for when you arrive. Over the course of a month, this will save quite a bit on your utility bills. 

Check for drafts

Checking your home for drafts is essential if you don’t want your heat escaping right out your doors and windows. If you can see daylight around your doors, then cold air is definitely coming into your home through those cracks. Adding weather stripping will stop this from happening. If you see curtains moving around your windows, then you can bet air is seeping in there as well. Adding clear silicone caulk around window frames can help staunch the flow of air and cut off that source of cold air as well.

Energy-efficient windows

If you live in an older home, you may want to think about window replacement. Older homes have windows that are not conducive to keeping out the cold and heat like today’s modern windows to. This will be an bit of a pricey outlay of money, but you will be amazed at the savings you’ll experience over time in lower utility bills. 

Allow the sunlight to enter your home

Natural sunlight can help warm a room. During the day, open the curtains and let in the natural heat. In the evening, close the curtains to trap in the heat. There is also nothing like natural sunlight to not only warm up a room but also to give you an overall feeling of warmth inside as well.

Dress for the cold- even indoors

Wearing layers, even when you’re indoors is an easy way to keep warm. When it is bitter cold outside, it’s difficult for your home’s HVAC to keep up. Continually adjusting the thermostat will not change this. Your home may only be able to heat to the lower 70s and it will still feel cool inside. Put on a long sleeve t-shirt and sweatshirt along with some sweatpants. You can still be comfy, even if you can’t be in light clothing. It’s the nature of winter days. 

Look into different heating sources

Try adding a couple of heated throw blankets to your mix of other fluffy throw blankets in your living areas for those who run colder than others. Grab some hand warmers at the hardware store and toss them in your hoodie pockets. You can even add a couple of more energy space heaters to run when it gets extremely cold as long as an adult is always in the room and you don’t run them for hours on end. If you have gas fireplaces, use them. You can purchase natural gas heaters that can be attached to the has connection of your fireplace and they can be run instead. The usually have forced heat that will blow into the room. This is a great heat alternative on those unusually cold days.

Get help from community programs

There are community programs or government assistance that may offer financial support for heating costs. Most regions have a range of programs to help households with their energy bills. Determine if you meet eligibility requirements and understand application procedures for any available assistance. 

Energy-efficient appliances

If you’re in the market for new appliances, look for energy-efficient models if possible. For example, energy-efficient furnaces, water heaters, and other appliances cost more initially but save energy over the long run, so they sometimes make good financial and environmental sense. 

Smart energy consumption habits

Adopting simple energy-conscious habits within your household can prove to be quite constructive. Prompt family members to switch off lights, electronics, and heating systems when not in use. Basic practices like shutting the doors of unused rooms and using curtains effectively go a long way in ensuring energy efficiency and reducing heating costs.

Take the initiative to winterize your home by looking for potential vulnerabilities

Check if windows and doors are properly sealed, and check the roof for leaks or any missing shingles. By addressing these problems before the brutal winter months, you will prevent heat loss and save on your heating bill. 

Close unused vents

Identify rooms that you seldom use and close the vents in them. This will prevent heated air from entering unused spaces and redirect it toward the areas used most often, optimizing energy usage. Be careful, however, not to close too many vents. In most cases, closing more than one vent prevents air from entering the heating system, making it an unnecessary and straining system. 

Use your ceiling fans

Ceiling fans are not just for cooling; they are also for helping distribute warm air throughout the room. During the winter, you want to set your ceiling so that it is spinning clockwise at a low speed. This allows the warm air that rises to the ceiling to swish downward and be distributed more evenly, making your heating source’s workload easier. 

Now that you know how to make your home energy efficient and keep the costs low when heating it, you can guarantee to stop worrying about the money it costs to stay warm. You can stay warm and healthy while keeping peace of mind.

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