5 Tips for Lowering Your Heating Bill This Winter
Freezing temperatures have hit North Carolina hard this year. With more wintry precipitation than usual and temperatures in the 20s, Chapel Hill and Triangle residents are working extra hard to keep their homes warm without breaking the bank on energy bills. Bud Matthews Services service techs work hard to keep your furnace well-maintained and running efficiently, so it’s important to keep all that toast warm air inside your home! Here are our five top tips for maximizing the efficiency of your heating system this winter, without spending a dime:
Energy Saving Tip #1: Use the Sunshine
Even during the winter months, North Carolinians are lucky to get their fair share of sunshine. With Raleigh, NC seeing an average of 213 sunny days per year (that’s higher than the national average), we have plenty of opportunities to take advantage of the sun’s warmth, even in winter! So start the day by raising your blinds and opening your curtains. Letting in the sunshine on sunny days will warm your home and give your furnace a little break.
Energy Saving Tip #2: Seal Windows and Drafty Doors
If you live in an older home, chances are you have several drafty windows and doors. Replacing windows is costly, but sealing drafts can be quite affordable—or even free! Start by replacing damaged or crumbling weatherstripping around your windows. For drafty doors, use draft stoppers. Draft stoppers are cheap and available in several different styles, from magnetic stripping to velcro. You can even make your own draft stoppers with fabric and a filling of dried beans or rice! Finally, to keep chilly drafts out of your home, take the time to install storm windows and doors.
Energy Saving Tip #3: Adjust Your Thermostat
During the night and when your family is gone during the day, turn down the thermostat. This simple action takes mere seconds and can really make an impact on your monthly expenses. Duke Energy reports that you can save as much as 3% on your heating bill for every degree that you lower your thermostat! If you have family members who get colder than others, invest in cozy throw blankets and flannel sheets to stay warm without cranking up the thermostat. To make managing the temperature in your home a breeze, consider installing a programmable thermostat.
Stay Warm Tip #4: Use Your Ceiling Fans
Most of us think of ceiling fans as a way to keep cool in the summer months. But did you know that most ceiling fans can be set to change direction? By setting your fans to spin clockwise in the winter (as opposed to counterclockwise in the summer), you can help pull warm air trapped near the ceiling down into the room. This is especially helpful in homes with high or vaulted ceilings. When using this energy saving tip, however, be sure to keep the ceiling fans at the lowest setting.
Winterizing Tip #5: Clean Your Air Filters
You should switch out your HVAC filters at least every few months, and even more often if you have shedding pets. When air filters are clogged with dirt, dust, and debris, your heating system will have to work a lot harder to heat your home. That means higher energy bills! Luckily, air filters are easy to replace and only cost a few dollars each.
Finally, to stay up to date on the overall health of your furnace, consider a maintenance agreement with Bud Matthews Services.