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Apr 14

Easy Ways to Reduce Heating and Cooling Bills

Whether you have an older furnace and window air units, or you have a new HVAC system, you probably take for granted that your house will remain at the temperature you want. You like knowing that you can adjust that temperature to make your home feel warmer and more toasty or cooler and more comfortable based on the weather outside. You may not realize that every time you touch that thermostat, you add to your heating and cooling bills Saving on energy costs is easy when you look at easy ways to make your home feel more comfortable.

Install a Learning Thermostat

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You can pick up a learning thermostat for around $200 or less from most home improvement stores. These thermostats let you decide on the temperature that you want and gradually pick up on the settings you like. It will actually learn how to predict your wishes and make changes based on the settings you used in the past. With a learning thermostat, you can even download an app that lets you make adjustments while away from your house. This lets you turn on the AC or increase the heat in your home before you leave from work.

Eliminate Drafts

There is nothing worse than feeling a cold draft on an already cold day. Those drafts can drastically drop the temperature in your house and leave your whole family shivering and shaking. Those drafts can also raise your cooling bills in the summer because the drafts let cold air escape. While you may not have enough cash to replace all your old windows, you can cover the glass with window film kits. Use a draft dodger by each door to block cold air coming from the outside, and try putting rugs or blankets down on the floors.

Make Gradual Changes

Even if you can’t afford a learning thermostat, you can still lower your heating and cooling bills. Experts recommend that you keep your house at a set temperature like 65 or 70 degrees Fahrenheit, but you may find that you still feel too hot or too cold. Instead of instantly changing the thermostat, adjust the temperature setting by one or two degrees every day until you feel more comfortable with that change. Making gradual temperature changes, installing a learning thermostat and eliminating drafts can significantly bring down your heating and cooling bills this year.

30 comments

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  1. Juan Cleland
    Twitter:

    I have been looking around the web for these types of tips because my heating bill this winter was extremely high and the temps were not even as cold as they were the past few winters. Thank you for the article fencecompaniesmaryland

  2. Patrick Conklin
    Twitter:

    Great advice, but if you decide to change the thermostat yourself make sure you turn off the power to the furnace or air handler prior to changing the thermostat as the transformer that supplies power to the thermostat is within the heater. If you don’t you can easily short out the control computer or other electronics in the HVAC system. Superior Service

    1. DanaPots

      Thank you for the additional tips, Patrick.
      DanaPots recently posted…Attn: South Florida – FPL to reduce rates in 2016!My Profile

  3. Scott Wright

    There is some good information in your blog. I would add a couple things in the spirit of trying to help. You could change your light bulbs to LED bulbs which would save a few bucks on the utility bill. Another easy tip is to lower the hot water heater to 120 degrees. Most plumbers set them higher then that. Good luck in the future with your blog. I will visit often to check it out for more good money saving ideas.

    1. DanaPots

      Thank you for the additional tips, Scott 🙂
      DanaPots recently posted…Creating a Greener, Eco-Friendly EnvironmentMy Profile

  4. ndemi
    Twitter:

    …….and how do you reduce heating costs in a Kenyan house where the landlords expects you to install the heating system yourself with interfering with “his” house?

  5. Ruth Jones

    If you’re looking to change your thermostat they may be also called “programmable” or “wifi thermostats” in some stores. It’s true also that the more you toy around with your thermostat that your bills are going up, one common mistake many people make is turning the heat or cooling all the way up or down thinking they’ll get the desired effect “quicker”. You’re just making your system work harder and it’s not getting warmer/cooler any quicker either.

    1. DanaPots

      Very true, better to keep the thermostat consistent.
      DanaPots recently posted…Live like a ButterflyMy Profile

  6. nathaniel DANIELS

    I have been looking around the web for these types of tips because my heating bill this winter was extremely high and the temps were not even as cold as they were the past few winters. Thank you for the article http://danielshvacphiladelphia.com/

  7. Dass

    Hi, Dana
    Nice post indeed and must say Wow!! This is the way to control our bills whether it’s heating or cooling. well, never stop writing and I just love read the way you write articles.
    Dass recently posted…Vayne Counter – How To Counter Vayne EasilyMy Profile

  8. Sweeney

    Some great tips here, air to water heat pumps are also a great way to help you make a huge saving overtime.

  9. J Davidson

    The article is short but makes a couple of really good actionable points. I like the idea of sneaking up the temperature over time. Too many people don’t realize that our body get will gradually get used to getting by in hotter (or even colder) climates. Why to you think we are able to live in such diverse places of hot and cold weather across the globe.

    Stopping drafts pulling cold air out of your home is a great idea that I’ve never thought of – again another instantly actionable action so to plug some of these right away. Great stuff.

  10. Leesley

    Hi Dana, thank you for the great post. All of your suggestions are fantastic and well put. If you are ever in Oregon and need some more ideas, please stop by and say hello http://www.nwheatingandcooling.com

  11. Michael Smith

    Great tips, my Parents house electricity bills are too expensive because we have not thought about how we could reduce the bill, Thank you for this!

  12. Chase

    You can also switch to using a tankless water heater if you have a small enough home. Will definitely add up to a lot of savings over time.

  13. Rob Sprague
    Twitter:

    investing on new thermostat will definitely save some bucks in the long run. Agree?
    Rob Sprague recently posted…Glass Window RepairMy Profile

  14. Wade Nelson
    Twitter:

    We made the switch to programmable thermostats in our home and office. This lets us keep an average temperature throughout the day and night that we feel comfortable at versus playing with it throughout the day. I’ve noticed since setting them up on our ductless heating units that it takes less time for the rooms to get comfortable and the bills have dropped considerably.

  15. Bob Wiseman

    Stumbled across this gem of an article. Thank you for representing our industry so well.

  16. Malcolm

    All great tips. You don’t even need a learning thermostat like the Nest. All you really need is a digital thermostat that has a time on it so it will heat or cool your home differently weather you are home, at work or sleeping.

    Also, I would add to check your insulation in both your attic and crawl space. Adding an extra layer, or even an initial layer, can have a big difference to your energy bill.

  17. Demetrio Selman

    Also looking into your roof may help on your electricity bill as well. Making sure there are no holes or fragile locations in your roof can help. Sometimes these issues can cause a surge in the amount of electricity being used.

  18. David Green
    Twitter:

    Garage door insulation materials are designed to stop the flow of heat from the outside to the inside on the garage door. The R-value is just a measurement of how well the materials are working, the higher the R the better the insulation quality. If indeed you have an attached garage and its insulated consider spending a few more dollars on a higher R garage door, it will pay for itself in energy cost in know time. It will be much stronger and durable also. Call around don’t get your first bid, there will be a wide range between competitors on basicly the same products. Also make sure you get there reviews and some referrals, there are a lot of shysters out there in every industry.

  19. Rick Solomon
    Twitter:

    One thing I’ve done in the past that has worked well for me is to invest in black out curtains for rooms with windows that have direct sunlight on them. Blocking the suns rays in the summer has helped to keep my rooms cool in upstairs bedrooms during the day.

  20. elena

    Great tips here! I am NOT looking forward to summer and the bills that come with the heat. Ugh.

  21. Jaden Luis

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  22. Craig Osterhoudt
    Twitter:

    I always tell people to invest in fans then move the thermostat up a few degrees. Moving air can feel up to 10 degrees cooler than stagnant air. This way you can save money without losing comfort. Just make sure you actually move the thermostat up a few degrees when you start using the fans otherwise you will be spending more money.

  23. Eminent
    Twitter:

    Planting tress outside of your house is also helpful to reduce your cooling and heating cost.

  24. Elaine

    Being a Realtor in North Texas, I can say that an updated and well-maintained heating and cooling system is one of the biggest selling points of a home. If you have a well-maintained HVAC system that is energy efficient, you are in a good place if you’re considering selling. I have had many clients who immediately walk away from listings if there is any question about the condition of the unit, or if it appears that it might not be energy efficient. Definitely not something a homeowner wants to overlook.

  25. Ritu Aggarwal
    Twitter:

    Thanks for sharing these tips to reduce bills. My house electricity bills are too high. Hope this will help me. I am definitely going to try this. Thanks.

  26. Capstone

    These are such a helpful tips. A regular maintenance is so important for your ac to reduce your bill.

  27. Heather

    Windows that are in disrepair can really impact your heating and air bill, so it’s important to fix the issue before it becomes a big problem. Thanks for sharing!

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