As summer turns to fall, you will begin to feel a chill in the air, leading you to start thinking about the even chillier air that is coming soon after that. Winter brings many delights to a lot of people, but one aspect of the season - paying your heating bill - is not one of those things. There are some very basic and simple ways to cut your heating bill that you may not think of.
Turn Down Thermostat at Convenient Times
One major way to cut around 14% off your heating bill each month is as simple as turning down your furnace thermostat in the hours you are away from home and every evening when you go to bed. Reports state that by doing this for eight hours while you are at work and eight hours in the evening when you are asleep that it will significantly lower your costs. Many furnaces these days come with thermostats that you can program to lower the temperature for a certain amount of time, and then raise the temperature back up at a designated time. So in all actuality, you would not even notice because it could be set to warm up your home before you get home from work or before you get up in the morning.
Use Curtains to Let Sunlight in or Keep Cold Out
Open the curtains on all of the windows that face the sun to take advantage of the warmth in the cold winter months. Letting in the warmth of the sun during the day helps to keep your home warmer, and prevents the furnace from running as much. In the evening, close the curtains tightly; which will keep the warmth in, but also keep out all the cold drafts. This will also keep your furnace from clicking on as often.
Keep the Windows Sealed Tight
Keep your windows draft free and you will be amazed at how much warmer your house can stay. There are several ways to do this that don't take much time, and are easy to do. Buy caulking to fill in the tiny gaps that let air in around your windows. You can purchase caulk in tubes that you squeeze out around the frames (you will also need a caulking gun for this, but they are very inexpensive), or you can buy rope caulk that is tacky and adheres to your window frames just as well as the tube kind.
An alternative to caulking is to put plastic over your windows on the inside. There are kits available that are pre-cut to certain sizes. All you do is apply the double-sided tape along the outer edge of the window and then fit the plastic over it. Heat the plastic with a hair dryer, shrinking it so you have a tight fit without any unsightly wrinkles. Doing that also makes it so clear that your view outside is not blocked at all. If the kits are too expensive, then just buy some plastic drop cloths, cut them down to the size of your window, and use clear tape to put them on. The only downside to this is that some of these drop cloths may not be as clear, so you will want to check that before buying them.
These are just three of the many easy ways to cut your heating costs in the winter, but they can be just as effective as more expensive options that you'd have to pay someone else to do - so why not give them a try?
Alex writes for HeatingOilShopper.com, a leading source of information on a range of heating oil topics for homeowners, helping them to find the best New Jersey (NJ) heating oil prices (http://www.heatingoilshopper.com/s/new-jersey).