When the temperature drops, heating bills usually rise. But just because it’s cold out shouldn’t mean you have to break the bank just to stay warm. Reducing your heating costs is actually pretty easy when the seasons get much chillier. For those of you living in parts of the country that are headed for a deep freeze soon, you could be in for an expensive winter. Maybe you need a heat pump installation and can’t afford it at the moment, but you still want to live in comfort.
The real trick here is to get clever, use common sense, and find less expensive sources of sufficient energy. Here’s how to do it:
1. The Sun
It’s that great ball of fire up above and it’s pretty handy for staying warm. But, of course, it’s also a temporary solution until it sets in the evening. That’s okay though, you can make the most of the sun’s warmth and light during the peak hours when it’s slowly but surely rising and falling overhead.
The natural heat that it gives off can be an invaluable source of heat for your home, one that costs nothing to utilize. You just need to remember to let it in when it’s available and keep it in once it’s begun its descent.
That means opening up your curtains, blinds, whatever window dressings you have, so the sun’s rays can emanate into your home through the windows. Even more important is knowing when to shut those same coverings so you can retain the heat you have captured. Window glass is a terrible insulator and that precious heat will escape through if given half the chance.
2. Kitchen Appliances
You know how the last thing you want to use in the dead of summer is your oven? When it’s 95 degrees outside, you’re not too keen on cooking a pot roast because it just means more heat. Well now is the time to prepare that roast and bake some cookies and, while you’re at it, how about a nice lasagna?
Using your oven to cook is a great way to heat your home and help you save money on your food bill at the same time. You won’t need to order out when you’re making all of these wonderful meals. When you’ve finished, leave the oven door open and let all the residual heat expand through your home.
DON’T run your oven only to heat the house. That’s very dangerous.
3. Space Heaters
You may want to do a comparison on your energy costs here as you might just discover that operating an electric space heater per hour is less expensive than turning up the thermostat for that same hour. Space heaters are a great option because they typically run cheaper and they can moved around into any room in the house.
You’ll find portable versions that easy to maneuver and larger, more stationary options that are meant to heat one room instead of many and reduce your heating costs in the bargain.
4. Setting Your Thermostat Correctly
This is also a great way to save some money. Bring down the temperature when no one is home and only bring it back up when it’s being occupied.
Even when you and others are in the home, you may all want to consider bundling up a little so you’re not setting the thermostat so high. A sweater, maybe a blanket. These can be very effective ways for lowering your costs as well.