We’re all looking for ways to save money, and “how to keep heat bills low in the winter?” is a question all Wisconsin homeowners could benefit from. Wisconsinites spend hundreds of dollars every month to heat their homes. At Capital Heating & Cooling we believe every penny counts that’s why we came up with these tips to help keep heat bills low without compromising your comfort or health.
1. Install an Energy Efficient Furnace
If furnace replacement services are on your to-do list this year, consider installing a high efficient heating system to keep heat bills low this winter. When choosing energy efficient heating equipment we recommend a natural gas furnace because it’s the least expensive type of heating system to operate and maintain. Yes, the initial investment is more than a single stage furnace but the money you save on monthly heating bills will outweigh the initial cost of a new furnace in no time.
It’s also important to look at the unit’s efficiency rating; furnaces with an AFUE (Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency) rating of at least 92 and an electrically efficient blower motor (ECW or variable speed) are best.
2. Get a Furnace Inspection
Like any piece of mechanical equipment, without proper cleaning and adjustments it works harder than it has to. For your furnace this means it uses more energy to heat your home than necessary. Why? Failure to remove dirt and debris from your furnace prevents sufficient airflow and makes the furnace motor work harder to push the air through the filter. Leaving a dirty furnace go for too long can cause the furnace motor to overheat and ultimately lead to complete furnace failure. In the end the cost of a furnace maintenance services are far less than the alternatives.
Don’t have a furnace? No sweat, our Menomonee Falls HVAC technicians are highly trained to service all types of heating equipment ranging from high efficient gas furnace equipment to boilers and geothermal heating systems.
3. Get a Programmable Thermostat
This little guy can be the jackpot of easy ways to save money (assuming your furnace is in good working condition and clean.) A programmable thermostat automatically adjusts the temperature in your home based on your settings. For example, set it ahead of time to turn down a few degrees at bedtime, or when you’re at work. Some more sophisticated thermostats like the NEST thermostat actually learn your behaviors and can adjust automatically.
4. Set Thermostat to “Auto”
Set to “auto”: Leaving the thermostat’s fan switch to “auto” means the fan only runs when the furnace runs. Setting the fan to “on” causes it to run all the time, whether or not heating or cooling is needed.
5. Adjust Thermostat Settings
Lowering your thermostat by as little as 7-10 degrees for 8 hours a day (like when you are asleep or away from home) can save as much as 10% a year on heating and cooling costs. Recommended thermostat settings when you are home are 68 F in winter and 78 F in summer.
Have a fireplace? Believe it or not when we cozy up to a good old fashion wood burning fireplace you’re actually loosing heat because the chimney is drawing out more heated air than the fire can produce. Instead of literally heating the outdoors, turn your thermostat down when you cozy up in front of the fire and when you’re done, safely close the flue to keep the warm air inside your house!
6. Seal Leaks
Like grains of sand through an hourglass, the warm air inside your home easily slips right out your door and windows if they’re not properly sealed. A little caulk and weather stripping will do the trick if you have older windows. For a quick alternative, roll up a blanket and tuck it tightly against loose seams–even a short term solution is better than none! If it’s time to replace your windows, consider Energy Star® qualified windows.
The same principals apply to your duct work. Do a visual inspection to check for leaky joints, holes, or gaps in your duct work. We’re happy to help close them up with air duct sealing or duct work replacement services.
7. Keep Up with Furnace Maintenance
Dirty filters and ventilation ducts make your furnace work harder and longer. A little preventative maintenance can also help you avoid costly repairs! Yearly tune-ups will keep your system operating efficiently and help prolong the life of your equipment.
8. Open Window Shades in the Morning & Use Insulation
Keep your shades and curtains open during the winter days to let the natural sunlight in. Mother Nature can help heat your home for free! Good insulation in your attic and walls can also help retain the heat inside your home. As the top furnace company in Milwaukee & Waukesha counties, give us a call if you’re in need of a contractor referral.
9. Close Shades at Night
Window coverings act as another insulation barrier to help keep cold air from getting inside. So when the sun goes down, keep the curtains closed. Good insulation in your attic and walls can also help retain the heat inside your home. As the top furnace company in Milwaukee & Waukesha counties, give us a call if you’re in need of a contractor referral.
10. Turn Off Exhaust Fans
While exhaust fans help eliminate excess moisture and odors, they also remove warm air from the rooms in which they operate. Turning them off after use is a good way to keep the house comfortable and save energy.
11. Close the Fireplace Flue
When not in use, remember to close the fireplace flue to keep cold air out and warm air in.
12. Run Your Ceiling Fan on a Low Speed in Reverse
Operating your ceiling fan in reverse will bring the cool air up and the warm air in your living space.
We hope you’ve found these money saving tips helpful – there’s plenty more where these came from too! Subscribe to our YouTube channel. Our Milwaukee are heating company is always available for more money saving tips or to schedule furnace maintenance or a free furnace replacement consultation.