The winter months can place a great deal of stress on your home, particularly on your central heating system. Freezing temperatures can drive your energy bills sky-high, and leave you shivering even with the thermostat cranked up all the way. Fortunately, there are a variety of different things that you can do to keep your heating bills low this winter:
Change the Furnace Filter
The most important thing that you should do before the snow falls is to change the air filter in your furnace. This filter is designed to remove dust and other contaminants from the air being blown throughout your home, and if it becomes clogged your furnace won't be able to draw in enough air to properly heat your home. You can take the dirty filter out by hand (you may need a screwdriver – check the manual) and take it to a hardware store to find a clean replacement. To ensure that your furnace is working at peak efficiency, you may want to check and change your filter every few months. You should also double check all the air vents in your home to ensure that they are not being blocked by furniture or airflow, which can also reduce the effectiveness of your furnace.
Avoid Using the Fans
While this may seem like a minor thing, not turning on your bathroom fan after you take a shower can help keep that residual heat within your home, which in turn can help maintain a moderate temperature. The same thing goes for your range hood in the kitchen: not turning it on can help keep the heat from your stove and oven within your home.
Use Space Heaters
If you live in a larger house or apartment, and only have one or two bedrooms, you may want to invest in a small space heater. These small heaters are more energy efficient than using your central heating system at night and can help keep your energy bills low while still maintaining warm temperatures in your bedrooms.
Make Use of Window Treatments
You should also ensure that your windows are being properly utilized to maximize the amount of heat allowed into your home. This means that you should open the blinds or curtains during the day so that sunlight can enter your home, and close them during the nighttime or when its overcast to act as an insulating barrier between the window and your home's interior air temperature.
Contact a heating system maintenance service for more information and assistance.
A few years ago, I could tell that we were having serious furnace problems. In addition to dealing with a house that was constantly too cold or too warm, we were also plagued by a noisy, smelly furnace that seemed to have trouble on a daily basis. Unfortunately, I didn't know enough about furnaces at the time to spot the problems quickly. One day, the entire system died, and it was beyond repair. After having that experience, I learned a lot about HVAC systems, so that I could troubleshoot future systems. This website is all about teaching you what you need to know so that you don't end up in the same situation.