How to reduce winter heating costs

Winter is right around the corner, which means it’s time to start focusing on your heating bills. If you use gas to heat your home, inflation is going to make things tough. According to a study from the Energy Information Administration, you’ll likely spend about 30 percent more on heating costs this winter. No matter how you heat your home, there are ways to reduce the expense. Here are some tips that should help.

Turn It Down

One easy way to save money on heating costs is to lower your thermostat. If you have a programmable unit, set it to lower the heat each day while you’re not at home and at night while you’re sleeping. According to, lowering your thermostat by seven to 10 degrees from its normal setting for 8 hours a day can reduce your heating costs by an average of 10 percent a year. That’s significant!

Put a Hat On It

Just like you, your home will retain a lot more heat if you top it with a hat. A home’s “hat” is insulation. Packing — or replacing — insulation in the attic or roof will do wonders for your heating bill. You can do it yourself, and there’s even a federal tax credit to cover materials, but it can get pretty messy. If you go the professional route, make sure you shop around for the best deal.

Cool Your Water

Your hot water heater can contribute to expensive heating bills. As The New York Times reports, most hot water tanks are set to 140 degrees. At that setting, your tank can waste money via standby heating. If you set the tank to 120 degrees, you can save an average of $400 per year.

This article by Chris O'Shea originally appeared on SavvyMoney blog, and is used by permission.

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