Winter will be here in a few months, so it’s important to be mindful of your heating habits. Many homeowners don’t realize how much energy they waste by heating their homes inefficiently. According to the Energy Saving Trust, poor insulation and draughts can account for up to 30% of heat loss in a typical home.
Some even run into problems because they forget to schedule regular maintenance for their heating systems. About 60% of boiler breakdowns happen in winter, so keeping your system in good working order is crucial. If you want to avoid these problems, you can do a few things.
1. Seal cracks in your home
One way to ensure you’re keeping your heat in check is by ensuring you aren’t letting the warm air escape through cracks and openings around your windows and doors. Many people don’t realize how much heat they lose this way. You can quickly check for cracks by holding a lit candle up to the area in question.
To seal cracks, you’ll need to use a quality sealant. You can find this at most hardware stores. Once you’ve sealed the cracks, test the area again with the candle to ensure there are no gaps. You may need to apply additional sealant if there are any remaining gaps.
2. Check your insulation
Many homes have poor insulation, which can lead to heat loss. This accounts for about 25% of heat loss in a typical home. To check your insulation, you can hire an energy auditor to do an assessment. They will be able to tell you what type of insulation you need and where you should install it.
Some homes need more insulation than others, so getting an assessment is essential. For example, homes in colder climates need more insulation than in milder temperatures. You can also check your insulation by looking for gaps in the attic, walls, and floors.
3. Get your HVAC system serviced
Your HVAC system is one of the most important things in your home, so keeping it in good working order is essential. One way to do this is by getting it serviced regularly. It would be best to have your system serviced at least once a year, but twice a year is even better.
The technician will clean the system during service and check for any damage. They will also test the system to make sure it’s working correctly. Some homes have fire dampers installed in their HVAC systems, so it is also a good time for a fire damper inspection to be carried out. This will help to ensure that your system is safe and working correctly.
If your HVAC system is not working correctly, it could be wasting a lot of energy. This not only costs you money but also contributes to climate change. Consider replacing your system with a more efficient one if it is over ten years old.
4. Use a programmable thermostat
There are many benefits to using a programmable thermostat, including saving money on your energy bill. You can set the thermostat to lower the temperature when you’re not home and raise it again when you are. This way, you’re not wasting energy heating an empty house.
You can also set the thermostat to a lower temperature at night and raise it again in the morning. Doing this can save you up to 10% on your energy bill. If you don’t have a programmable thermostat, consider getting one. They are relatively inexpensive and can save you a lot of money in the long run.
5. Use only as much heat as you need
Many people use more heat than they need. This wastes energy and money. Set the thermostat to the lowest comfortable setting when you’re not home. And when you are home, only use as much heat as you need.
For example, if you’re in the kitchen cooking, close the doors to the rest of the house so that the heat doesn’t escape. And when you’re not using a room, close the doors to that room to keep the heat in. If you have a fireplace, only use it when you’re in the room. Don’t leave it on all day just to heat the house.
You can also try using space heaters to heat only the rooms you’re using. This can be more efficient than heating the entire house. Just turn off the space heater when you leave the room. This will help to prevent fires.
You can do many things to keep your home warm this winter. By following these tips, you’ll save money on your energy bill and help to prevent climate change. Always use only as much heat as you need, and you’ll be on your way to a more comfortable and efficient home.