5 Reasons Your Winter Heating Bill is So High and How to Lower It

As if trying to stay healthy this winter during a pandemic isn't enough to keep ourselves busy right now, many of us are keeping an eye on our winter heating bill. We are finding that many of our customers are still working and schooling from home, which means home HVAC systems never really get a break. However, does this mean that our heating bill has to break the bank? NO! Today we'll discuss a few factors that contribute to higher winter heating bills and what you can do to lower them.

The Nature of Winter and Being Indoors

Winter is typically cold and when it's cold, your furnace will need to operate more to satisfy the needs of your thermostat. That's just the nature of winter. This is especially true if you're spending as much time indoors as many of our customers are right now. Your furnace is designed to keep you comfortable while indoors. So, if you're working and learning from home, your furnace is going to operate more in January than a milder month such as September. As a result, your winter heating bill will increase.

Is there anything you can do to lower your winter heating bill? 

The biggest thing you can do to lower your winter heating bill is to adjust your thermostat accordingly, then get up off the couch and move to generate your own heat! Alternatively, if you insist on being lazy this winter (no judgment here), you may want to wear more layers or pile on the blankets.

Air Leaks and Poor Insulation

Anytime you notice that your winter heating bill is higher than usual, especially if it's higher than you'd normally expect during the winter months, you should check your home for any air leaks or drafty doors. Any home is susceptible to air leaks and drafts, but we tend to notice them more in older homes that have settled. Pay particular attention to your attic as heat often escapes through the room, making it very difficult to properly warm your home.

Is there anything you can do to lower your winter heating bill? 

If you have any air leaks around your windows or doors, be sure to seal them. If you're finding that heat is also escaping out of your roof through the attic insulation, you may want to consider upgrading your insulation.

Extra Laundry

Not only are you spending more time indoors, but we find that most of our customers tend to do more laundry during the winter months which can make a big impact on your winter heating bill (aka utility bill). All those extra blankets and layers you're using to stay warm must all be washed and are often dried since it's too cold to hang out to dry outdoors.

Is there anything you can do to lower your winter heating bill? 

Just because it's too cold to hang your clothes or blankets outside, doesn't mean that you can't still "hang-dry." Indoor drying racks are great for hang-drying your clothes year-round.

More Indoor Gatherings

During a normal, non-COVID, year, we find that people tend to gather indoors more often (versus the summer months when you're more inclined to play outdoors). While this year may be a little different since many people are "social distancing" to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, you may still notice a slight uptick in your winter heating bill for this reason. When we play host, we tend to cook more food, stay up later and utilize our electricity more than usual. This will obviously impact our winter heating bill.

Is there anything you can do to lower your winter heating bill? 

If you're planning to entertain in your home this winter, you don't necessarily need to crank up the thermostat to stay warm. You can actually warm up your home by using the oven. The heat from the stove and oven will naturally heat your home such that your furnace doesn't have to kick on. While this will still increase your utility bill to some degree since you're still using electricity or natural gas, it could save you a little bit on your winter heating bill.

Time for a New Furnace

Finally, if your winter heating bill continues to increase, it could be that your furnace isn't operating as efficiently as it should be. As such, it may be time to upgrade your furnace. Installing the latest advances in technology could mean that you're better able to heat your home and lower your winter heating bill.

Is there anything you can do to lower your winter heating bill? 

If you’ve recently opened your latest winter heating bill and feel that it's too high, and you've evaluated the options above, give Choice HVAC a call at 919-435-2711. We can help you determine what changes should occur to have the biggest impact on your comfort and your wallet!

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