Times are tough right now. We’re all trying to pinch pennies and find ways to save money. You might look at your heating bill every month and think, “What? Why is it so high?” There are easy ways you can cut your heating bill by major percentages.
Our Chief National Consumer Correspondent Jeff Rossen is taking you through the simple steps in the video above.
Adjust your ceiling fan: The direction of how your fan is spinning actually matters. In the summer, you want your fan spinning counterclockwise. But in the winter, your fan should be spinning clockwise. That way the cool air is pulled up toward the ceiling, which, in turn, displaces the warm air that rises and collects near the ceiling. Make sure it’s running at the lowest speed. How do you switch the direction? Most ceiling fans have a button on the control pad on the wall or on the remote it comes with. If you have an older ceiling fan, there will be a switch on the motor, either on the outside or underneath the light. If you want to be able to switch the direction more easily, it might be time for an upgrade.
Check the fireplace: This next tip is like keeping a window open in the winter. You wouldn’t! If you leave your fireplace flue open, experts say 8% of your utility bill could be flying up the chimney! After you’re done having a fire, check inside the fireplace to make sure the flue is closed.
Window curtains: During the day, let the sun do its job. Open your window curtains and let the sun heat your home — especially when it comes to the southern-facing windows. (Don’t know which way south is? Take out your cell phone. It has a compass app.) Then, at night, go through your home and close the shades and curtains. This will block the cold draft from coming in and forcing your heater to work overtime. This tip is going to save you up to 10% on your heating bill.
Shut the door: Not using a room in your house during the day? Then why should you pay to heat it? Close the vents in that room and shut the door. Pay to heat the rooms you’re actually using!
LED light bulbs: This one will save you major money. Replace your regular, old lightbulbs with LED light bulbs. LED bulbs use 75% less energy and can last 50 times longer than a typical incandescent one. It can save you more than $1,000 within a year. Need help finding some good options? We’ve got you covered.
Move the furniture: Over time, your furniture tends to shift. Couches and chairs can get pushed up against vents. Not only is this a fire hazard, but it’s blocking the heat from getting into the rest of your home. Every week or every couple of weeks, move your furniture a few inches away from the heating vents to let that warm air flow freely.
Blankets and socks: This tip from the experts is probably the simplest, but, sometimes, we forget. Rather than moving the thermostat up a couple of degrees when you’re cold, throw on a pair of warm socks or a sweater. The more blankets you have around, the more you’ll be inclined to grab that instead.
Thermostat: Turn down your heat when you're sleeping. You’re piled under blankets anyway! Turn down the thermostat when you’re at home too. For every degree you turn down your heat, it's one percent savings on your bill. Turn it down 15 degrees, that is an instant 15% savings. Smart thermostats do help with this. If you forget to turn down your thermostat, you can set it from your phone after you’ve left your house.
All these tips and percentages certainly add up! Happy savings!