Midwest Deep Freeze: How to Save Money on Heating Bills

The cold and chilly air may be too much for you to handle when you’re outdoors. Save yourself from further misery when it comes to your heating bills. To save on energy costs, you need to be aware of your energy consumption and learn how to control it.  Whether your thermostat is warming your home during the winter season or cooling it in the summer, you can save money on heating costs by following these helpful tips.

  1. Wear weather-appropriate clothing. You may be running to your thermostat at the first sign of a drop in temperature. The most energy-efficient and easiest thing that you can do when you are experiencing extreme heat or cold is to wear appropriate clothes.  If you dress lightly in cold weather, you may only be inclined to turn up the heat on your thermostat. It is more practical to bundle up inside the home with woolen clothes to keep your body warm.
  1. Insulate your home. Insulating your home can dramatically drop your heating bills.  You need to insulate the floor of your attic first to trap the heat absorbed by the roof and the ceiling. You can also ensure adequate ventilation by having an exhaust fan installed in one of the attic windows. Insulation can keep the warm air inside your home for circulation.
  1. Turn down the thermostat. This is often the simplest way to save on heating bills when there is a drop in temperature caused by increment weather. During the winter months, you only need to keep your thermostat to at least 68 to 72 degrees.  You can lower the temperature when you get ready for bed. Use another blanket for extra warmth while sleeping. If you are using a furnace for heat, you must change the filters and have it checked regularly as proper maintenance.
  1. Heat with fireplace inserts or wood-burning stoves. Firewood is less expensive than the heating bill from the thermostat. If there are construction sites in your area, check if there are builders willing to let you have the scraps of leftover wood.
  1. Use cotton flannel bed sheets. Cotton flannel sheets will keep you warm and cozy on your bed during the winter. The same goes for sleep wear. For additional heat, keep a hot water bottle in bed.  Make sure the lid is sealed tight.  Keep only warm water and not hot to avoid burning yourself.
  1. Check the weather stripping. Check to ensure that the weather stripping is air tight around doors leading to the outside. Just a little air leak can cause the furnace to keep running in order to maintain the desired temperature in your home.
  1. Cuddle Up! Cuddle next to a love one while watching your favorite TV show or movie can sure make things more comfortable and keep you from turning up the thermostat.

Share your ideas on other ways to save money on your heating bill by commenting.

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5 Responses

  1. Anna says:

    Replacing windows that have broken seals is another great way to save on heating bills.

  2. Matt says:

    My brother just put an outdoor wood-burning unit outside their house to supplement heat during the winter months. He is using dead ash trees from the emerald ash borer infestation as fuel. Getting hot water from this too!

  3. Tyler Sims says:

    Installing a programmable thermostat was one of the most effective things I’ve implemented to reduce heating (and cooling) bills. It automatically adjusts the temperature up or down during times I am usually not home.

  4. Jim says:

    Fireplaces can be a tricky thing. The new ones all have a vent/pipe to pull external air as oxygen is required to produce the flame and are very efficient at heating the home/room; howver, older systems pull air from inside the home/room and often times your actually sucking the warm air out of your house to help the fire burn and it goes out the chimmney. That is why in some older homes you find the fireplace room to be very warm and the rest of the house gets very cold.

  5. Chet says:

    @tyler same here! I think most new thermostats have this as a feature, but many people might not know about it. I have mine set to drop 4 degrees during the day when I’m at work & at night when I’m asleep.

    Another thing to do is hire a pro to perform an energy audit. Probably better in the warmer months, but they will seal your house & create a vacuum with a big fan over one door. This tells them where the air seepage is coming from. Likely it will be a combo of the ground floor & attic. Since heat rises the warmer air will suck cold air from the ground as it escapes.

    Like the article says, proper insulating can help save tons of money & prevent energy waste.

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