We all want to find ways to save money, especially when it comes to heating our homes in the winter. You can take many steps to improve your home’s energy efficiency, and a lot to damage it too. Make the most of your budget this winter by avoiding these 10 home heating mistakes that could spike your bills.

10 Home Heating Mistakes to Avoid

1. Heating an Empty House

Are you out of the house most of the day or going away for the weekend? Don’t heat the house the way you would if you’re relaxing at home. Spring for a programmable thermostat. You can set it to turn the heat down a little when you’re away, and then turn it back up before you return. Read here for recommended thermostat settings.

2. Turning the Thermostat Down Too Low

While you don’t want to heat an empty house, you also want to avoid turning the thermostat down too low. Doing so will force your heater to work extra hard when it’s time to bring the temperature back up costing you more money in the long run.

3. Cranking Up Thermostat

Cranking up the thermostat up when you get chilled is one of the biggest home heating mistakes to avoid this winter. Turning up the thermostat won’t heat your home any faster. Pick a temperature and let your central HVAC work the way it’s intended.

4. Leaving Curtains and Blinds Closed

You could be missing out on free heating if you leave your curtains and blinds during the day. Opening them can help keep your heater from running too often during the day.

5. Using Space Heaters to Save Money

Space heaters are useful to help out a single room. However, running several space heaters at once to heat the home or a floor will raise your energy costs. Also, they are a safety risk, as they’re responsible for roughly forty percent of all heating equipment related house fires.

6. Closing Vents and Doors in Unused Rooms

It might make sense to close vents and doors in unoccupied rooms. After all, why heat a room that’s empty? The fact is that the HVAC professional installs ductwork and heating system based on the square footage. The system won’t work efficiently if you disrupt the balance by closing vents and keeping doors closed.

7. Neglecting Air Filters

Dirty Air filters will cause your heating and cooling system to work harder and use more energy.

8. Ignoring Leaks and Drafts

Expecting your furnace to do all the work is a common mistake. Don’t ignore leaks and drafts. Check all the doors, windows, and exterior walls for drafts. Seal and caulk any areas that allow cold air in and warm air out.

9. Using the Fireplace as a Heat Source

Relying only on your fireplace is a mistake in the winter. The problem is that the heated air will be sucked up through the damper. You’ll feel warm sitting right by the fire, but the other rooms will become chilly.

10. Putting Off Regular Maintenance

Just like a vehicle, your furnace needs regular maintenance to keep it in good working order. Don’t put it off or ignore it. Keeping your system well-maintained will keep it running more efficiently, keeping energy bills down. Routine maintenance will also keep any small issues from becoming a costly repair or replacement.

Avoiding these common home heating mistakes will drastically improve your comfort and lower heating costs, as will scheduling a tune-up for your furnace. Call Advantage Air & Service at (479) 361-8647 today and ask about our maintenance plan.

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