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8 Ways to Save on Heating Costs

1Dad was right – put on some clothes!

Put on an extra outer layer, like a sweatshirt. Or, try wearing base layers (long underwear). If you dress warmly, your body can stay at a comfortable temperature even when your thermostat is turned down a few degrees cooler (recommended temp is 68). You’ll save money for every degree your thermostat goes down. Use extra blankets, down comforters, or a heated mattress pad at night to stay warm in bed.

2. Winterize doors and windows.

Use weatherstripping and caulk to prevent heat loss and reduce the amount of cold drafts entering your home. This is an easy and inexpensive fix around leaky doorways and windows. Rope caulk can easily be removed seasonally if you have older, single-pane windows and want to open them again in the summer months. A layer of plastic sheeting is also a great, temporary way to insulate single-pane windows in the winter.

3. Take advantage of your curtains and blinds.

Open your curtains and blinds early in the day to let the sun’s warmth naturally help heat the house, then close them after sunset to keep the cold out. Hang heavy curtains over windows to add a layer of insulation against the cold, especially if you don’t have double-paned windows. Insulated curtains might be a bit of an investment initially, but can be reused year-over-year and will save you in the long run.

4. Turn down the thermostat when you leave home.

If you plan to be away from home for a few hours or longer, turn your thermostat down ten degrees. You’ll enjoy significant energy savings.

5. Use a space heater.

Sometimes it isn’t necessary to use your furnace to heat the entire house. Use energy efficient space heaters to keep the spaces you live in warmer, or to warm up your home quickly after being gone all day or when getting up in the morning. It’s a simple trick to keep warm and still save money on bills.

Find the best space heater for your needs. Ceramic, fan, infrared, and oil-filled are some of the most common. Panel heaters use convection and radiant heat to circulate warm air and take the chill out of room very quickly. Propane space heaters are more commonly associated with patio heating, but there are indoor models available. Additionally, these are not reliant on an electrical source like other space heaters. Do your research to see what fits your needs best.

6. Reverse your ceiling fans.

You may not know this, but most ceiling fans have a switch that makes them rotate clockwise or counter-clockwise. In the winter, set them to spin in a clockwise direction because it pushes the warm air from the ceiling down.

7. Check your heating vents.

Check to make sure your heating/return vents are not covered up by furniture (couches are often guilty of hiding vents). Adjust heating vents in unused rooms to let in less heat, if possible. Also, clean those vents and change your filters! Dust is a great insulator and will actually restrict heat flow if your vents/ductwork are clogged.

8. Lock your windows. 

This is a good safety practice that will save money on heating bills, too. A locked window is more tightly closed than an unlocked window, so less cold gets in and less heat escapes through the cracks.

We hope these tips help keep your heating costs manageable this winter! If you find yourself struggling with bills, or finances in general, reach out to a Member Service Representative (MSR) at one of our branches. We have a certified financial counselor on-staff who can sit down with you and help you put together a plan to get back on track! Call or text us at (814)946-0857.