Ways to Conserve Heat During the Winter
Wasting heat is bad for your energy bill, ultimately affecting your budget. There are many steps you can take to improve energy efficiency and cut heating costs. These steps range from simple changes and tasks you can implement to more complex solutions requiring a professional HVAC technician.
Program Your Thermostat
Most modern thermostats are programmable, allowing you to set different temperatures inside your home based on your schedule. Turning the temperature down when you are away means not wasting energy to heat an empty house. You can program the thermostat to go down a few degrees when you leave for work and come back up before arriving home. You may also consider programming your thermostat to lower the temperature at night when household members are sleeping. The U.S. Department of Energy suggests that you can save up to 10% on heating costs by turning your thermostat down 7 to 10 degrees for 8 hours a day in winter.
Although you can adjust your thermostat manually, programmable thermostats provide the convenience of returning temperatures to a comfortable level before you wake up or return home. If your thermostat is not programmable, it may be time to call in the professionals for an upgrade.
Regularly Replace Furnace Air Filters
Your furnace air filter helps remove dust and allergens from the air circulating through your living spaces. It also protects the internal components of your heating system from dirt and debris. However, when the filter becomes clogged, your furnace must work harder to push air through the system, causing an increase in energy consumption and a heavier workload for your unit. Experts recommend that you change out air filters at least every three months. However, you may have to replace yours more often depending on factors like how much your heating system is running and if you have pets. Regularly replacing filters helps reduce the workload on your furnace, reducing your monthly energy costs.
Furnace Inspections and Tune-Ups
Your furnace works best when in proper working condition. Having a professional HVAC technician inspect and provide maintenance on your unit helps it to work more efficiently. During annual maintenance, a technician will clean your unit, lubricate moving parts, and check that parts like the blower motor operate correctly. The tasks a professional performs during service visits can significantly reduce your heating bills.
Reverse Ceiling Fan Direction
One of the simplest ways to lower energy use in your home as the cold weather sets in is to change the direction of your ceiling fans. During the winter, your ceiling fan blades should move in a clockwise direction to create an updraft to circulate warm air around the room. Keep the fan on the lowest setting to avoid feeling a cool breeze as it spins.
Close Off Unused Rooms or Spaces
Heating a room that is rarely or never used is a waste of resources. If you have an area that is hardly used during the winter, close it off to save heat for the rest of your home. Shut the door to that room and close off the vents. This allows heated air to circulate more around the rest of the house and may allow your furnace to run less.
Heating your home will take more power if you have drafts coming through your house. Check windows and doors for gaps that need to be sealed. You can use caulking to fill holes around windows and doors. Eliminating these drafts will keep the cold air out so your home can stay warm with less work from your furnace.
Utilize Your Curtains
The curtains on your window aren’t solely for decoration. During the day, when the sun is shining, open them up and let the sun heat your home. At the end of the day, close the curtains to block cold air. You may consider buying thicker window coverings to keep even more cold air from entering your home at night, especially if you have drafty windows.
Contact the Professionals
At Vastola Heating & Cooling, we are a family-owned company that has been serving the residents of Orchard Park, NY for nearly 70 years. We install, maintain, and repair heating and cooling systems. In addition, we are indoor air quality experts, provide Aeroseal duct sealing, and install smart thermostats. Contact Vastola Heating & Cooling today if you are looking for ways to save on your heating bills or need a professional to solve any HVAC issues you are experiencing.