Hand setting digital thermostat

Reduce Home Heating Costs This Winter

Everyone wants to save money and finding ways to reduce home heating costs during the winter is a great place to start. Fuel costs vary by region but regardless of where you live, a substantial portion of your household budget goes toward maintaining a comfortable indoor temperature.

If your home’s HVAC system is more than 15 years old, it is time to start thinking about purchasing updated equipment. This is a good time to consider switching to an alternate fuel source. Natural gas is the least expensive fuel, followed by oil, propane and electricity.

Even if your system is up-to-date, you can improve its efficiency by making sure it is properly sealed. Experts estimate that up to 40 percent of heated and cooled air leaks through ducts. Aerosealing is a new technology that blows sealant particles into the ducts. The particles produce airtight bonds over any leaks in the system.

Lowering your thermostat can also improve your home’s HVAC system efficiency. Set the thermostat for 68 degrees Fahrenheit for occupied rooms during the day. At night, set your thermostat to 60 degrees for optimal efficiency.

Making sure you have adequate attic insulation is another way to save money on energy bills during the winter. Your attic should have eight inches of cellulose insulation or a minimum of 11 inches of rock wool or fiberglass insulation. You can hire an HVAC technician to add more insulation if you have less than the minimum required. A technician can also make sure all openings in the attic floor, including those near electrical boxes and plumbing vents are sealed to eliminate drafty rooms.

It is a good idea to have a qualified HVAC technician service your system at least once per year. Many companies offer affordable service contracts. This saves you the hassle of trying to remember when to call for annual service. The technician will inspect the entire system and can save you money by finding small problems before they become big ones.

Throughout the year, you can reduce your home’s heating and cooling costs by changing or cleaning the air filters approximately once per month. Following these tips can help any homeowner save money and extend the lifespan of the home’s HVAC system.

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