39. Save $100 per month – Save money on heating

This article contains the most comprehensive listing to save money on heating bills.

You could, during the night, turn heating of whole house turn completely off and heat with electric radiators the used bedrooms only. The electricity conversion may be twice as expensive, but you could reduce your overall energy consumption by 4 times by only heating the bedrooms locally.

Adjust your thermostat: Turn your thermostat up a couple of degrees in the summer and down a few in the winter. Every degree saves approximately 3 percent in energy costs. If your home is empty during the day, consider buying a programmable thermostat to avoid heating and cooling your home when no one's there. Set the thermostat to turn the air or heat on about 30 minutes before you get home.
Simply installing a programmable thermostat in your home and it gets programmed, saves you about $20 a month on your energy bill.

You can save even 20-40% on heating energy by using a programmable thermostat that can control the temperature of each individual room, such as the heatmiser. Such as during the night, you only heat the bedrooms.

You can also spend a weekend air-sealing your home to reduce air flow to the outdoors, saving you another $20 a month on your energy bill.
Most homes have some air leaks that make the job of keeping it cool in summer and warm in winter that much harder – and that much more costly for you.
Seal it up. Use a lighted candle to detect air leaks around doors and windows. Caulk is much cheaper than electricity.
Seal energy leaks. Caulk over cracks and small holes around windows and exterior walls. Look carefully around plumbing pipes, telephone wires, dryer vents, sink and bathtub drains and under countertops.

We live in an old historic house, and saved a lot on our gas bill this winter by closing off all of the unused fireplaces, and insulating around all the doorways to the outside. We close off vents to rooms that we seldom use (like the guest room). Close off rooms or porches that you aren’t using.

As soon as the temp goes above freeze warm clothes turn off the heat. I reserve air conditioning for bad allergies day.

For the last four years I have kept my thermostat at 55 during the fall-winter and spring days and nights. I have a heated mattress pad (about $45, but I got mine at a garage sale, spotlessly clean for $10) and a electric blanket I plugged into a timer, to come on for only one hour before I go to bed. It warms the sheets and mattress and then the mattress pad keeps me nice and warm all night, even set on the lowest number. I have a oil filled electric radiator type heater also on a timer in my bedroom that comes on three hours before I get up, it warms the room air and makes it comfortable to get out of bed, shower and dress. I am gone from 5:30 am to 5;30 pm to work. The programmable furnace thermostat is set to heat the house to 65 degrees by the time I get home and stays at this temp. For about 3 hours for me to have dinner, TV and get ready for bed. On weekends, I have the thermostat set to keep the house at 62 during the day and the same 55 at night. This has saved me a lot of money, If your gone from home a lot as I am it might work for you too. I also have covered many leaky windows with plastic and double sided tape every winter to stop the cold drafts and save what heat I do use. I am now looking for a room renter and a carpool to save on the 26 mile ride back and forth to work. It tough being a single person, on one income.

Yes, use a line or rack or something else other than the dryer to dry your clothes without having to use electrical/gas power. Typically, I don’t allow product links in my comments section either, but that wooden clothes drying rack you’ve linked to looks too interesting to pass over.
Lots of us do not have the yard for a clothesline. And then there is the winter and rainy days. I use this wooden clothes drying rack that has found a great spot right under my ceiling fan. The air movement keeps the clothes from getting crunchy.

Use an on demand water heater instead of heating water constantly and letting it sit. Use cold water for most laundry. Showers and dishwasher are the only major hot water uses. The down side is that you have to run the water a short time to get hot water, instead of instantly.

Lighting: Turn off lights when not in use, even for just a minute. Replace your most-used incandescents with compact fluorescent bulbs, which use 75% less energy and lasts about 10 times longer, or even better, install LED lighting, consumes even less energy and gives a beautiful, modern light.

Water Heating: Set water heater to the lowest temperature that provides you sufficient hot water. Wrap your older model water heater with a water heater blanket, especially if it is in an unheated area. If your hot water tank is in an unheated space, wrap it in an insulation blanket that can be purchased at hardware stores. And make sure it isn’t turned up higher than 110 – 120 degrees.

Thermostats: Set your heating thermostat at 68 degrees or lower by day and put on a sweater if you feel chilly. Use an ENERGY STAR qualified programmable thermostat that can automatically adjust the temperature of your home when you are away and don't forget to clean or replace furnace filters regularly.

Cooking: Pre-heat only for baking. Avoid opening the oven to check progress. Turn oven off before food is done and use retained heat to finish cooking. Use microwave whenever possible---it saves energy.

Clothes Washers: replace your clothes washer with an ENERGY STAR model when it is time. They use 50% less water and 70% less energy and that adds up to $100 every year. Run your washer, dryer, and dishwasher only with a full load.

Refrigerators: upgrade your refrigerator if it is 10 years old or older. Refrigerators use more energy than any appliance in your home.

Bathing: showers use much less hot water than baths. Install energy saving low flow showerheads and flow restrictors. And fix leaks to save energy and save water.

Weatherproofing: Don't let air escape that you've paid to heat or cool. Weather-strip to reduce air leakage around doors and windows, baseboards, and wherever pipes, wires, and vents enter a house.

Air conditioners, even in Florida’s steamy summers, set them to a just-bearable 80°F.

Use fans instead of air conditioning whenever you can.

Keep the thermostat a few degrees lower during winter.

A whole listing of energy-saving techniques you find here: Tips on Saving Money & Energy at Home

Maintain air filters and HVAC equipment. Well-maintained equipment runs more efficiently, so replace or clean filters as needed and have your air conditioner unit serviced annually. Change your filters. Keeping your furnace and air conditioning filters like new can save you up to 10% per month on costs.  Don't check them once a year, check them once a month.

Set your thermostat as high as is comfortable. The smaller the difference between the indoor and outdoor temperatures, the lower your overall cooling bill will be. Running the AC at 78°F instead of 72°F can save 6%-18% on your cooling bill.

Draw your drapes. Keep your blinds, shades and curtains closed on south and west-facing windows during the day to block the heat of direct sunlight. In the winter, open your south-facing drapes during the day to capture heat, then close them at night to keep it in. Do the opposite in the summer.

Stop cool air from escaping. Cool air can go right out the window. Add weatherstripping on doors and windows and caulk the cracks to keep cool air in and hot air from leaking into your home.

Properly insulate your attic. Install modern insulation to lower heating and cooling costs, preferably with a resistance rating of R21 to R30. On warm days, attic temperatures can get up to 140°F. In high cooling climates, a radiant barrier installed under the roof deck and/or a continuous ridge and soffit vent can effectively lower attic temperatures.

Install/finance a heat pump in the house. A heat pump saves money and provides peace of mind. A heat pump is the most advanced and efficient heating and cooling system available today. Upgrading your old heating system to a new electric heat pump can save you money on heating and cooling costs. A heat pump is clean, quiet and comfortable.

Try a heat pump. While they may not be the perfect solution for all parts of the country, a heat pump can reduce your power bills by 40%.

What is a heat pump? A heat pump is a cooling and heating system designed to keep your home comfortably warm in the winter and pleasantly cool in the summer. Unlike a furnace, it doesn’t burn fuel to make heat – it moves heat from one place to another. In the winter, a heat pump collects heat from the outside air and transfers it into your home. The heat pump is able to collect heat from the outside air even at temperatures well below freezing. In the summer, it takes heat from inside your home and transfers it outdoors, leaving you cool.

Also see http://www.alabamapower.com/residential/pdf/hpguide_0406.pdf

Fill Oil Tank During the Off Season. The price of oil usually drops during the late summer and the early fall. Oil will cost less per gallon then, so it will be cheaper to fill your oil tank than during the coldest part of the winter when demand is greater.

Space Payments Throughout The Year. You could arrange a payment plan with the oil company to pay a set amount every month. Instead of having to shell out several hundred dollars at once, paying smaller amounts might better fit your budget.

Insulate. Adding insulation can reduce cooling and heating costs by up to 20%. Some utility companies even offer rebates to help defray the cost, and the cost isn't that much anyway. You can add insulation to a 1,500 square foot home for about $200. Extra insulation in the attic can easily pay for itself in a few years.

Buy energy efficient appliances. Those yellow energy-guide stickers are important reading, especially if you're shopping for a refrigerator, air-conditioning or a furnace.

Get a free energy audit. Many utility companies will come out to your house for free or at a nominal cost and tell you how to save money. If yours will, let em. And while they're there, ask if they have any off-peak, load-management or other savings programs.

Minimize the use of ventilating fans in the kitchen and bathroom in the winter— you are sending your heat outside!

Change the filter on your furnace regularly to ensure that your furnace isn’t working harder than it needs to.

When building a home or replacing a roof, select a roof based more on energy efficiency than on how it looks. Light-colored roofs, such as white, galvanized metal or cement tile, do the best job of reflecting the sun, and cool quickly at night.

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