A typical family spends about $2,200 a year on home utility bills, and heating eats a big chunk of that money, according to Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.
A few small actions now can pay dividends in cutting energy costs down the road. The heating experts at the Carrier Corporation offer six tips to keep those furnace bills under control.
1. Remove clutter: Boxes, storage units and clutter near the furnace can obstruct air flow, preventing your system from working as efficiently as possible.
2. Maintain your equipment: An annual service inspection of your home’s heating system by a certified technician will ensure that equipment is in good condition and operating at peak performance.
3. Change that air filter: A dirty filter in your heating system slows the flow of air and makes your system work harder. Change your filter monthly or as instructed by the manufacturer.
4. Look for leaks: Check for air leaks in your home’s duct system and around doors and windows. Even the most efficient new system will not be able to halt energy losses due to leaks. Make sure that ducts are sealed and select insulation with a high “R” value.
5. Add a humidifier: Moist air feels warmer than dry air. A humidifier could allow you to keep your thermostat at a lower setting without compromising comfort.
6. Install a programmable thermostat: A programmable thermostat automatically adjusts your home’s temperature to provide the most comfort when your home is occupied. That means you can set the thermostat to dial down the temperature during the hours when no one is home.