The spike in energy costs has left many people concerned about the cold season ahead and potentially exorbitant heating bills.
Just one 275 gallon tank of oil can cost up to $1,300. On average, homeowners with oil heat fill their tanks at least six times during the winter. The costs for electric and gas have also increased significantly. That being said, the fall is the time to incorporate measures to reduce those energy bills.
How to Lower Energy Bills This Winter
- Replace your windows. If the windows in your home are 15 years old or more, chances are they are not very efficient. At least 30 percent of heat in your home is lost through the windows. Even if your home was built in the 80’s, it’s time to replace the windows. There are certainly more energy efficient windows on the market than those available 20-plus years ago.
- Replace your doors. Amazingly enough, many people will replace all their windows and save creaky old doors. The same rule that applies to windows, applies to doors that are 15 years old. Consider replacing your main front door and back door; the doors to the basement, and the door between your home and the garage.
- Inspect and install insulation. Have all your visible insulation inspected to make sure it is installed correctly and that there is enough. And if you have an old home that doesn’t have any insulation between the inner and outer wall, by all means hire an insulation company and have some installed soon!
- Check your heating system. It’s imperative to have your heating system checked annually. Contact a local company to service your burner and consider an upgrade if it is an old system. The technician who performs the service can make recommendations.
- Replace all your thermostats. Replace all your thermostats with digital, programmable units and set them to lower the temperature at night or when you are not home during the day. This will help to save on energy bills.
- Add a pellet stove. With the price of oil these days, consider a pellet stove or other alternative heating source. A pellet or wood stove is much more efficient at generating heat than an open fireplace.
The changes you invest in now should see you through at least the next 20 years and the cost of upgrading will be offset by rising energy costs.