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4 Major Tips for Affordable Home Heating

December 6, 2021

Heating costs form a significant part of utility bills during the winter season. You can reduce these costs if you understand how to minimize the heating energy your home requires. Below are four ways to minimize your heating costs.

1. Install the Right System

Choose the right system the next time you want to replace your heating system. Below are the major factors that mean you have the right system.

Proper Sizing

A heating system should be big enough (in terms of capacity) to heat your home – nothing more, nothing less. An undersized system won’t heat your home. An oversized system will consume more energy than it should, with the extra energy going to waste. Heating system sizing depends on multiple factors, such as:

  • Local weather and climate
  • Home size
  • Number of rooms
  • Building materials

The sizing calculations need to be precise, which is why you should let a professional heating contractor handle it.

Inexpensive Energy Source

Heating systems use different sources of energy. Compare the energy sources available in your area and choose the least expensive one. Common energy sources for heating include:

  • Oil
  • Natural gas
  • Propane
  • Electricity

The British Thermal Unit (BTU) is the unit for measuring heating system capacity. Know how many BTUs a unit of energy gives and the energy’s unit cost. That way, you can accurately compare the costs of heating energy.

For example, natural gas is less expensive than electricity and oil in many parts of the country. Again, your heating contractor can help you with the calculations and comparisons.

Efficient System

Once you choose your heating energy, choose the most efficient heating system that runs on the energy. An inefficient system can waste most of the energy and erase the benefits of heating with inexpensive energy. For example, standard furnaces are at least 80% efficient, but high-efficiency units can have efficiencies above

2. Maintain the System

Once you have the right system, maintain it to ensure it keeps running with the initial efficiencies. The necessary maintenance depends on the system you use. For example, for combustion systems, you should:

  • Replace the air filter to avoid air restrictions that might lower the system’s efficiency
  • Ensure the duct has proper insulation and is intact to avoid heat duct losses
  • Ensure all the registers are clear to ensure efficient airflow for energy efficiency
  • Give the system an annual tune-up to ensure all its parts and system operate as they should

The system installer will advise you on how to maintain it. Follow the advice to the letter.

3. Prevent Heat Loss

The energy your heating system consumes should all go towards heating your home. A few losses are inevitable, but you can minimize the losses to minimize your heating costs. Prevent heat loss with these tips:

  • Ensure all relevant parts of the house, such as the attic, have adequate insulation
  • Repair duct damages as soon as they occur
  • Seal all the perimeters around your doors and windows
  • Use energy-efficient windows that minimize heat transfer

A home energy assessment can help you identify heat losses so that you can plug them.

4. Use the System Properly

Once you have everything right, use the installed system properly to avoid energy wastage. For example, you should:

  • Program the thermostat or control it remotely to reduce heat output when no one is at home
  • Use a ceiling fan to increase air circulation and reduce the heating system’s load
  • Keep the furnace fan on auto so it circulates air and warms your home even with the burners on
  • Set the right temperature, as even a slight unnecessary increase results in energy wastage

Ideally, everyone in the household should be familiar with these tips for maximum effectiveness.

Comfort Solutions for all your heating needs. We can help you install, maintain, and repair your system so you can always enjoy affordable heating.