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Heating. Tips for cutting home heating bills
Are you looking to put extra cash into your family budget? You can put more money back into your pocket and save money by cutting back on the heating bills. No, this doesnít mean that you have to freeze all day and night, and you donít have to burn the furniture in your home to keep warm, but we are going to show you some of the tricks to get your heating bills down and still stay warm.
There are some easy things that you can do to cut your bills such as the first is make sure your doors are closed as often as possible. Donít allow the children to leave the doors hanging open when they are coming in and out, but make sure they shut them tight each time they go in and out.
Speaking of your front door, you need to be sure that your door shuts and latches properly. High winds can sneak through in areas around the door if the seals do not match up and the door doesnít latch tightly. If your door does not lock Ė fix it. The seals along the edge of the doorframe should match up tightly with the door itself.
If your home is older, the seal could be cracked or broken so you might want to check on this. If your home is brand new, it is still a good idea to check the seal on the doorway to make sure it was installed properly.
Now that your doors are sealed and closing, all the time, as they should, you can move onto your windows. Your windows need to shut as tightly as your door. Inspecting your windows, you should fix any cracks or holes that you have in the window itself or in the frame of the window. You also should be able to lock your window. When a window locks it is going to be shut tight and this limits or stops the air leaking in around the window.
Windows should remain locked all winter long to prevent any type of mishap, such as leaving the window open all the time, and letting the heat escape your home. If you have single pane windows, you most likely will want to put plastic sheeting over the window and tack it into place over the window. Single pane windows allow cold air into the room. The plastic sheeting stops the cold air from getting into your home.
Hanging heavy drapes over the windows that seem to allow the coolest air in is another method of keeping the heat in your home instead of it going outdoors. The wind blows across your yard and to you home in almost a certain fashion all winter long. The windows that are facing the windy side of your home should be covered with the heaviest drapes possible to save heat while keeping the cold air out.
We have covered the doors, windows and drapes to this point. Now we can move on to the flooring a bit. If you have all hardwood floors, or all linoleum in your home, it is going to seem colder than if you had carpets. Putting runners down for the winter in the kitchen, in the halls and in the bathroom or where ever you donít have wall to wall carpets is going to make your entire home seem warmer when you walk around.
To cut back on your heating bills you are going to have to dress for the weather. Children love to wear tank tops and shorts all the time and expect the heat to be turned up. Have your entire family wear t-shirts or sweatshirts all winter long so you arenít expected to turn up the heat when you donít have too.
Still more ways to cut back on your heating bills!
Do you have an attic in your home? If you have an attic, covering the opening with a piece of insulation and still closing the door behind you is going to stop air from going up through the attic and outside. Most homes lose valuable heat through the door to the attic, the stairway to the attic or the attic-opening period.
A piece of sturdy hard insulation is going to stop the airflow up the stair. In the same manner, you can stop the cold air from coming down with this piece of insulation.
Do you have air returns that the bottoms of your doors? Air returns on the bottom of the doors are found where there is a gap between the door and the floor. These could be basement stairs, attic stairs or doors that lead to mud rooms. The cold air from these not so often used areas will creep into your home and make you cold.
Use a blanket or a sheet and fold it up to stop the airflow during the coldest of winter months. There are specialty pillows that are made just for this but you do not have to buy anything, a felt blanket does the same job.
Back up in the attic of your home, you need to have a good layer of insulation along the entire portion of your home. If you donít use your attic, or even if you use your attic, there should be some amount of insulation on the attic floor to prevent the warm air from rising through the ceilings and out through your attic. You can use rigid insulation, which is the easiest to work with, insulation or blown insulation and get the same results.
Have your furnace checked regularly, at least once a year. Cleaning the filter or changing the filter is going to cut back on how hard the furnace has to work to heat your home. Every five to ten years you might want to consider replacing your thermostat as well. While this is an inexpensive item, if the thermostat is off it can cause your furnace to run more often.
Have your thermostat put in the room where you spend most of your time. If the thermostat is in a hallway or basement where there are more drafts, the furnace is going to run more often. If the thermostat is put on an inside wall, in the living room, this will be a good gauge for how warm your home really is. The thermostat on an outside wall, the walls that are on the outside of your home, will feel colder because cold is being conducted through these outside walls and into your home.