Many homeowners dread cold weather and the high heating bills that can accompany the winter months as their furnaces are forced to work overtime. Luckily, lowering your heating bill can be as simple as taking a look around your home and performing some easy do-it-yourself repairs to help relieve the work your furnace needs to do. Here are five quick, inexpensive fixes can add up to big savings on your home heating bill.
Replace old weatherstripping
If the weatherstripping around your windows and doors is worn out, you may find that your house has gotten a bit drafty. Old, torn weatherstripping is responsible for up to 12 percent of a home’s total loss of heat; these cold air drafts prompt many homeowners to crank up the heat, wasting energy. Even if you don’t touch the thermostat, though, your furnace will need to work harder to combat the inflow of cold air. To avoid this issue, aim to replace your weatherstripping every few years.
Raise exterior door thresholds
You may notice a strip of daylight seeping in from underneath your front door–and if daylight is seeping in, your home’s warm air is also leaking out. Luckily, fixing this problem is quick and easy. The height of many door thresholds can be adjusted by simply tightening a few screws. Be careful not to raise the threshold too high, though; if your front door scraps against the threshold when you open and close it, the door’s weatherstripping will wear out faster.
Upgrade your thermostat
Replacing an old thermostat can mean lots of savings on your heating bill. Choosing a programmable thermostat will allow you to have the temperature in your home turned down during certain hours every day, without you having to remember to do it. Whether it’s when you’re away from home, or while asleep in bed, having your thermostat adjust the temperature by 5 to 10 degrees can mean substantial savings to you. Some of the newest generations can even be controlled by an app on your smart phone. No more coming home from vacation to realize that you left your heat running at a cozy temperature, with no one there to enjoy it, thus running up your monthly heating bill.
Fill in any exterior wall holes
Your home’s pipes, electrical cables and gas lines all have to pass through your exterior walls somewhere, and often the spaces around these holes are filled in with caulk. The only problem is that caulk will eventually peel and crack as it ages, creating more gaps for cold air seepage. Check for any caulk that needs to be replaced and fill in any holes with a more durable expanding foam.
Use plastic film to cover your windows
Even if your windows have new weatherstripping preventing leaks around the edges, the glass of your windows is also a major source for heat loss. Limit this loss by covering the glass of your windows and sliding doors with transparent plastic film during cold weather months.
As you can see, with just a little bit of work and a few inexpensive materials, you can significantly reduce your heating bill, which will add up to big savings over time.
For additional ways to save money while maintaining ideal indoor temperatures, see the following post: