The average American home can attribute almost half of their annual energy consumption to heating their homes. It should come as no surprise in this inflationary environment that natural gas and oil costs are expected to rise again this year, so you will see that reflected in your heating bills. Luckily, there are many ways you can start to winterize your home to get the most out of your energy bill.

We all know that new energy-efficient windows and upgraded insulation can go a long way to reducing energy costs. However, we will look at some more budget-friendly methods you can start implementing today. These 12 ways to save money heating your home this winter could save you hundreds on your heating bill.

Seal Leaks

It’s always a good idea to take a close look at the exterior facing walls in your home to identify and seal any gaps, cracks, or leaks around windows, doors, and other openings. Weatherstripping and caulk are easy and effective ways to remedy any compromised areas.

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In addition to keeping out unwanted pests who may also be seeking warmth, this simple step will keep cold air out while trapping all the warm air in your home, where it belongs!

Let the Sunshine in!

While making the switch to solar panels can be an effective option when looking to save money on your energy bills long-term, that kind of investment isn’t necessary to harness the power of the sun’s warmth today.

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Leave the curtains or blinds open on any Northern, Eastern, or Western-facing windows during the day to let the warming rays of the sun fill your home. Once the sun goes down or the window becomes shady, close the window coverings to trap in the warm air and keep the cold air out.

Adjust the Thermostat

Lower the temperature on your thermostat when you’re not going to be at home or when you don’t need as much warmth to reduce heating costs significantly.

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If you are able to, invest in a “smart” thermostat that you can program to adjust the temperature automatically. Installing a smart thermostat can save you approximately 8% annually on your heating bills.

Regular Maintenance

Like most things around the home, your heating system must be serviced annually. A well-maintained system operates more efficiently and can save you money on energy bills.

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You can do your part by ensuring you change the filters in accordance with the manufacturer’s recommendations. This could range anywhere from 3 months to a year, depending on the type of filter and heating system.

Use Ceiling Fans

While you may think this seems counterintuitive initially because we think of fans as cooling systems, a ceiling fan can help keep your home warm.

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Heat rises, so as the ceiling fan runs in reverse / clockwise at a low speed, it will push warm air down from the ceiling to your level, keeping you warmer.

Lower the Water Heater Temperature

While the thought of sacrificing a steaming hot shower on a cold winter day can seem worth spending a few extra bucks, lowering your water heater temperature to around 120F can actually save you drastically.

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Having the water heater temperature set at 140F or higher can result in anywhere from $40-$60 of waste each year. That, coupled with the additional savings gained by lowering the water temperature can amount to $400 annually.

Use Insulated Window Coverings

Blackout curtains are good for more than just creating an optimal sleep environment. They are also perfectly lined to keep the cold air from coming into your home from the windows and locking the heat in.

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Keep them open while the sun is shining on the windows, but close them when it is not for optimal temperature control.

Strategic Cooking and Baking

Cooking and baking generates plenty of heat, so take advantage of this by using your oven and stovetop on cold days.

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Make some delicious homemade bread and soup on a chilly day. After cooking, leave the oven door open slightly, and turn that ceiling fan on reverse to circulate the warm air throughout your home.

Layer Up!

Not only does adding more layers of clothing keep you warmer on a chilly day without impacting your heating bill, but it can also add to the cozy aesthetic of your home.

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Incorporate the practice of hygge into your home and surround yourself with plenty of soft blankets, fluffy pillows, thick sweaters, and warm socks to help you stay cozy this winter while you save money on your heating bill.

Close Interior Doors

Lots of money can be wasted heating spaces that are seldom used in the home. This can be remedied by closing the doors and vents leading to that room. By implementing this practice, you’ll notice a more efficient use of your home’s resources, keeping the more critical areas of your home at a comfortable temperature.

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Just make sure you don’t close off the room with the thermostat in it. It will continue to measure temperature in the cold room while blasting hot air into the rest of the house, resulting in the heating system running constantly.

Seal the Fireplace

If you have a fireplace in your home, this can be an excellent opportunity to supplement the heat being kicked out by your heater. However, if left unattended, it can also be a massive drain on your heating bill.

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Always ensure the damper on the fireplace is closed when it’s not in use. An open damper creates a hole that lets warm air escape and cold air enter.

Use Space Heaters

If you only need to heat a small space, consider using space heaters instead of heating the entire house. For instance, if you work from home, use a space heater to keep your office or workspace warm while keeping the temperature in the rest of the house lower.

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While space heaters can be an effective and cost-effective heating alternative, always remember to be cautious and follow safety guidelines when using space heaters.

To Sum Up

While there are many areas of our lives being heavily impacted by inflation right now, your heating bill doesn’t have to be one of them. By incorporating even a couple of these energy saving ideas into your home this winter, you could potentially even save money compared to last year.

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So head out to your local hardware store, pick up a few necessities, and get ready to watch that heating bill drop!