While cold winters can take a toll on your utility costs, it’s possible to lower your heating bills by performing routine maintenance on your heating system and making your home more energy efficient. An airtight home with a tuned up heating system works to keep your home at a comfortable temperature for less.

Have the Furnace Maintained

It’s important to have your furnace serviced annually to keep it running as efficiently as possible. When HVAC contractors service the equipment, they clean, adjust, and verify that components are working as they should. The goal of annual maintenance is to bring the heating system into prime condition for the upcoming season.

Keep the Air Filter Clean

Besides professional maintenance, the best way to keep heating bills low is to make sure that the HVAC air filter is clean. During periods when it’s excessively cold and your system is running often, check the filter at least once a month. Change it when it’s covered with dust. You can also refer to the HVAC model’s manual for a recommendation on how often to change the filter.

Install a Programmable Thermostat

If your family is away for much of the day, consider installing a programmable thermostat. Most of us don’t think to turn down the heat before leaving the house.

A programmable thermostat gives the furnace a break from heating the home when no one is home to enjoy it. When you use a programmable thermostat, you’ll save electricity and fuel when you’re not home, which will help lower your heating bills.

Address the Windows

If you have single pane windows, your energy losses throughout the winter will add up unless you replace them with Energy Star windows or insulate them with window coverings. Window replacements are an investment, but you could also install storm windows, cover the windows with clear plastic sealing kits, or hang heavy drapes.

Seal the Air Leaks

It’s hard to lower your heating bills when you have warm air leaking out of your home and cold air coming inside. The most common places for drafts are around windows and exterior door frames.

Seal small cracks around windows with caulk and gaps under door and window openings with weatherstripping. A thermal imaging home inspection can help you locate the areas that need attention.

Improve the Insulation to Lower Your Heating Bills

If your thermal imaging results showed places where insulation is lacking in the attic or walls, consider adding more. Improving insulation is an investment with a high return because it starts saving energy the moment it’s installed and continues doing so for years. Adding attic insulation can be a do-it-yourself project although many people prefer using a contractor to upgrade wall insulation.

It’s not hard to lower your heating bills when you have an energy efficient home and a well-cared for heating system. The two go hand-in-hand to help you save money and energy.

Lannes Real Estate Inspections provides home inspection services including thermal imaging to Chicagoland and Southern Wisconsin. Contact us to book an appointment.