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5 Ways You’re Keeping Your Heating Bill High This Winter — And What To Do Instead

RossHelen / Getty Images/iStockphoto
RossHelen / Getty Images/iStockphoto

Most people have noticed that expenses have increased over the last year. Some of these costs can be difficult to work on because we all need to spend money on necessities like food and transportation.

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However, there’s one bill that we can still control if we take certain measures. There’s a good chance that you’re keeping your heating bill high this winter. The good news is that you can bring this expense down.

So, how are you running up your heating bill without realizing it?

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Always Keeping The Heat High

Many people tend to keep their heat on high at all times during the winter months. You may forget to turn the thermostat down when you leave home because you’re so used to having it on.

Sebastian Jania, the owner and founder of Ontario Property Buyers, explained, “Whether they are at home or not, they are keeping their heat on, in which case they’re spending more on heating than is truly necessary.”

How can you save money here?

“One way to go about this instead would be to program their thermostat to turn the heating off in the hours that they are outside of the home,” suggested Jania, “or alternatively get a smart thermostat that they can shut off the heat at the exact times that they are away from home or at least reduce the heat.”

This is something that you have to be mindful of. By not running the heat on high when you’re not at home, you’ll bring this expense down.

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Not Optimally Using Their Programmable Thermostat

One way people hike up their bill is by not programing their programmable thermostat. Scott Lieberman, founder of Touchdown Money, shared, “If left on default settings, programmable thermostats could be warming an empty house during the day or overnight.”

Similar to the previous example, you may not even realize that you’re keeping your empty home warm for no reason. Here’s what you can do instead to save money on your heating bill, according to Lieberman:

“The best way to save more money on heating costs and effectively use your programmable thermostat is to set an energy-saving temperature, like 60 degrees, for times when you are out of the house or sleeping. There’s no need to keep an empty home well-heated.”

What if you forget to program your thermostat before leaving home? Here’s what Liberman suggests:

“Install and use the Nest app (or whichever app comes with your thermostat) to further control temperatures remotely, like if you’re heading out for dinner or working late. You can adjust your thermostat on the go.”

The flexibility of using an app for this will help you save money by bringing the heat down when you don’t need it to be running.

Not Adjusting Based on Outside Temperature

According to Jania, “Another way that people are keeping their bills high without even realizing it is not adjusting the level of heat based on the temperature on the given day. Even during the winter, there are days that are much warmer, and on those days, one should be using less heat as it’s truly not necessary.”

The best way to avoid this heating mistake is to check the weather in advance to ensure that you’re not running your heat high on the mild days when you could get away with wearing an extra layer.

Not Checking Your Home For Cracks

Before the winter season starts, it’s urgent that you check for any drafts and cracks around your doors and windows. These allow the heat to escape, bringing up your heating bill.

Check for air leaks. Look at vents, plumbing pipes, chimneys and even electrical boxes in the attic to see if there’s any heat loss. Seal any cracks you find around windows or doors to stop the heat from escaping.

You’ll also want to ensure that your home is properly insulated so that the heat loss isn’t hurting your energy bill. Some homeowners invest in upgrading their attic insulation or exterior walls to help with this.

Not Wearing Layers

If you don’t wear the proper layers while at home, you may feel the urge to raise the temperature, increasing your heating bill. You may feel cold when you just need to add another layer to get more comfortable.

One of the easiest ways to save money here is to bundle up and purchase some warm blankets, so you can reach for those when you’re cold instead of constantly raising the heat.

Closing Thoughts

Even though it can be frustrating to see your heating bill going up, the good news is that you can find ways to save on this expense. You may be surprised by how much your heating bill drops when you wear another layer or seal that crack by the window.

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This article originally appeared on 5 Ways You’re Keeping Your Heating Bill High This Winter — And What To Do Instead