Keep Your House Warm – And Keep More $ in Your Pocket – Part 2
- Dust is a wonderful insulator and tends to build up on radiators and baseboard heat vents. It keeps the heat from getting into the rooms where you need it… dust or vacuum all radiator surfaces frequently.
- A small fortune gets lost by homeowners who try to cut corners by not having their furnace in tip-top shape:
- Before you use your furnace for the first time in the cold weather have it serviced. Many gas and oil companies provide this in your service contract or for a small additional fee and it could amount to savings of up to $400.
- Talk to your gas, oil or electric company to see if you can be put on a level billing contract. This doesn’t really save money, but does help you to budget for the heating season and makes heating bills more affordable.
- Inspect your furnace during the cold months. Keep parts clean. Replace air filters when necessary. Clean filters can save up to $60 a year on heating costs.
- Make sure that furnace cold air and warm air registers are not obstructed and vacuum them clean once a month.
- Turn off your furnace pilot light when heat is not necessary.
- Check for cracks around fireplace. Keep heat in by caulking all cracks.
- Think a fireplace or heater will help save money? It can work if you do it right:
- Keep fireplace damper closed when not in use.
Turn off heat when the fireplace is being used.
A glass front or glass screen will reduce fireplace heat loss.
Check efficiency ratings before purchasing appliances of any kind.
An electric blanket is much less expensive than heating your bedroom.
- Your kitchen is a great place for energy savings. Just follow this simple recipe:
- Try to cut down on the use of kitchen and bathroom fans in winter. These fans cool the air and waste household heat.
Cover pots and pans when heating liquids.
Cooking utensils with flat bottoms and tight fitting covers save heat.
Be sure pots and pans are right size for range burners and elements.
Plan some meals so that entire meal can be prepared in oven at same time.
Thaw frozen meats to almost room temperature before cooking.
Turn off your oven about five minutes before cooking time is over. The heat in the oven will keep on cooking your food, and you’ll save on gas or electric bills.
Don’t open the oven often to check food while it’s cooking. You lose 20 to 50 percent of the heat each time you do – and you slow down the cooking process.
Never use your stove for heating. It doesn’t do a good job, it’s bad for the stove and it could be dangerous.
- A few last hot tips for saving on your heating bills:
- Never use open flames or candles for heating. Damage from fires is much more expensive than heating bills.
- Try to teach children to keep doors closed and discuss other ways of conserving heat and saving energy. If yours haven’t turned out a light since they were old enough to stop playing with the light switch – good luck!
- Check to see if you qualify for any government assistance with your heating bills if you have a low income or are a senior citizen on a fixed income.
- Check tax breaks and homeowner’s insurance policies for savings when you add energy conserving items to your home.
- Check with your local electric company to find out if they have times during the day when the rates are lower. Using the oven, dishwasher, washing machine and other energy demanding appliances during these times may lead to big savings. Be careful. Some plans may make you pay a premium price for using electric during peak hours and you’ll need to make sure to do wash and other chores during the off hours.
- Talk to your utility company for other suggestions for saving money on your heating bills. Many companies will actually send someone to your house for a home energy audit and offer suggestions to help you use less energy.
Tips courtesy of Chiff.com