It can be a challenge, as the weather turns colder and as we even experience freezing and snowy conditions, to keep our gas heating costs down. Our inclination during the winter is to turn the heater thermometer up and warm the house as much as possible.
You’ll be glad to know that if you are heating your home with natural gas, you are using one of the most efficient methods of heating your living spaces. Many others like you rely on natural gas for home heating. More than 47 percent of American households utilize natural gas as their primary heating source. But the downside is getting that huge winter natural gas bill!
The Energy Information Administration (EIA) projects that natural gas winter heating bills will increase by up to 5 percent for the 2020/2021 winter season. This is the result of colder weather being forecast for this upcoming winter and more time spent working or schooling from home because of COVID-19.
But take heart, there are several ways that you can lower your natural heating costs this winter.
Ways to Lower Your Heating Bill
The less heat you need for your home, the less natural gas you will use. So a common way to save money on your energy usage is to invest in better home insulation. If you live in an older house, there is a good chance the insulation is not as effective at keeping treated air in your home. In that case, you might consider having a professional conduct a home energy audit. This will identify areas susceptible to heat leakage and, in turn, potentially save you a lot of money on your gas bill.
Set out to properly insulate windows, attics, and ducts, as this will help trap heat in your home for longer periods of time.
You can even use spray foam to reduce air escaping around utility cut-outs for pipes under the sink. Be sure your electrical outlets and wall plates on your outside walls are correctly insulated.
Adjust Your Daily Habits
You can save money on your energy expenses without spending anything out of pocket just by changing some habits around your house. Here are some cost-saving actions you can take:
- Take advantage of natural sunlight heat by opening window shades when the sun is shining in certain areas of your home.
- During the colder months of the year, you might wear extra layers of clothes and adjust the thermostat to a setting that is lower than normal.
- You can facilitate better air circulation of heat in your home by clearing obstructions in your vents and radiators.
- Shut doors to unoccupied rooms in your house, and close vents in those rooms so you don’t have unused living spaces being heated. This helps you avoid heat being wasted so treated air can be redistributed to the primary living areas of your house.
Install a Smart Thermostat
An easy method for using less natural gas is to install a smart thermostat. This will enable you to keep your living spaces at a comfortable, energy-saving temperature. With your smart thermostat, you can intelligently adjust your temperature settings in different rooms of your home throughout the day and night.
For example, set your thermostat to automatically lower the heat when you are away from home so you don’t waste gas when the home is unoccupied. The smart thermostat also allows you to set schedules for heating so your home warms up only when you really need it.
Other Ways to Conserve Natural Gas
Seal Windows: During your DIY home audit, check your window seals. According to Energy.gov, heat loss through leaky windows accounts for 10 percent to 25 percent of your entire heating bill.
Control Humidity: Home humidity is typically an issue in colder climates. Dry winter air draws moisture from your skin, which makes you feel colder. So rather than adjusting your thermostat, use a humidifier to maintain your home humidity between 30 percent to
Don’t Use the Fireplace: You’d be surprised at how inefficient heat produced from your fireplace really is. As much as 80 percent of the heat generated from your fireplace escapes through the chimney. As the warm air leaves, cold air enters your home through leaks in your house’s exterior walls and windows. You might prefer to get a natural-gas-fired stove for your hearth. This way you have the appearance of a fireplace while having a much more efficient heating result.
Install an Attic Tent: An attic tent insulates the attic access door from the rest of your home. This will prevent warm air from escaping into your attic.
Insulate Your Water Heater: An insulated natural gas water heater will operate much more efficiently. This is especially the case if your water heater is in your garage, basement, or other non-insulated space. You should be able to find water heater blankets online or at local hardware stores. You’re also advised to keep your water heater maintenance regularly to boost efficiency.
Look to Apollo Heating and Air Conditioning for Proper Maintenance of Your HVAC
Look to the HVAC experts at Apollo to ensure your energy system is in excellent condition and operating at maximum efficiency during the winter season. We will also be happy to share energy-saving tips with you to help you save money on HVAC usage for your home year-round!
Apollo field technicians will work closely with you in deciding what HVAC system is the best, and tailor it to fit your unique needs and preferences! We are committed to delivering premium quality HVAC service, maintenance, products, and documentation in Kennewick, Pasco, Richland, and beyond!
Learn more by contacting Apollo Heating and Air Conditioning! Call us at (509) 396-COLD (2653).