If you have noticed that your house or apartment is somewhat drafty, then you are probably also paying way too much in heating bills. By taking some simple steps, you can greatly reduce your heating bills and find something more important to spend your money on for the remainder of the winter. Here are seven simple tips to help you save money and reduce your heating cost.
1. Use heavy drapes over the windows.
Putting heavy drapes over your larger windows will act as more insulation and help reduce drafts around the rooms. You should keep these closed at night and when the sun is not shining, but be sure to open them when the sun is bright - which will help warm your rooms that face the sun.
2. Put draft stoppers under the outside doors.
If you have large gaps under your doors, then you want to put a draft stopper there. That will help to keep out the cold air and keep your warm air in, too.
3. Put plastic over drafty windows.
Put sheet plastic over your windows - especially if you feel a draft. An easy way to do this is to use a staple gun - or duct tape. Some window kits are also available that let you take them down later when not needed any more.
4. Turn thermostat down at night, and lower in the day.
Once the other things are performed, you will find that this is a great way to save money on your heating bill. Turn your thermostat down while you sleep - and get cozy under all those blankets. Somewhere between 55 to 65 degrees is a good range, but the lower it is the more you will save. Also, if you do not keep it warmer than about 68 degrees in the day, it will help to keep your bill even lower.
5. Close off unused rooms and use alternate heat when you are there.
Heating unused rooms does not make a lot of sense - and heating those rooms costs money, too. Michael Bluejay, also called Mr. Electricity, says that you should not "close the registers in unused rooms, though, because you can damage your ducts or even the furnace itself."
Instead, if you keep your thermostat low (45 degrees or so), shut the doors of those rooms you are not using, then you can use some kind of alternate heat source to heat the areas you are in most of the time. This can be space heaters, kerosene heaters, or a wood-burning stove. When you need to, you can turn up your central heat when you go to bed.
6. Put weather-stripping and caulk around doors and windows.
Weather-stripping around the doors and windows will help produce a very tight seal that should prevent any further drafts. This will help you heat your house more evenly.
7. Lower the Thermostat on Your Water Heater.
Another major source of wasted heat energy is keeping your water hotter than necessary. Water heaters can lose a lot of heat in the winter, but by turning down the thermostat you can save money. Since 180 degrees is hotter than most humans can stand, it won't hurt to turn it down considerably more.
There certainly are other ways to save money, too. You can get an examination of your whole house by calling your electric company. They will gladly come out for free and give you an evaluation that will show you what needs to be done to conserve on heat - and money. Many repairs will be tax deductible and may also pay for themselves over the course of the winter - letting you save money on your heating cost and still enjoy a warmer house, too.