Want to keep those bills as low as possible? Here are six ways to do it:
Use your programmable thermostat. Drop temperatures by two or three degrees for eight hours a day (when no one is home, or when people are asleep, for example) and you will save yourself about 10 percent on your bills with no loss in comfort. You can expect similar savings if you drop the overall temperature in your house by a couple of degrees throughout the day (a good target temperature when people are home is about 20° C).
Don’t heat unused rooms. Close vents and doors in underutilized areas, or use zone controls or supplemental space heaters to “spend” your heat wisely.
Weatherize. If you own a typical Ontario home, about 15 percent of the air you pay to heat escapes through voids in walls, roof, windows – even through your floors and electrical outlet boxes. Installing proper insulation and weatherizing are critical steps to preventing overwork by your heating system.
Use windows to your advantage. Leave windows uncovered during the day to soak up free solar heat, then cover them at night with heavy, insulating curtains to keep that heat in.
Get routine heating equipment maintenance. Your furnace or boiler loses an average of about five percent efficiency each year if it is not properly maintained, so make sure to get your furnace or boiler serviced every year.
Consider sensible heating equipment upgrades. Even a well maintained furnace or boiler can’t compete with today’s high efficiency heating equipment when it comes to keeping you warm for less money. In fact, you could save as much as 30 percent on your annual fuel costs when swap your older heating system for a new model – enough to offset the cost of a new heating unit in just a few years.