It’s getting colder, and every the changing seasons is a sign of upcoming holidays and family gatherings, longer nights, and cold mornings. The winter seasons tend to be busy for most of us, and, honestly, a little stressful as well. You can help ease that season stress with a little preventative heating maintenance, ensuring that you’ll save some money this winter on your heating bills as well as have the peace of mind that comes with a nice warm home on a cold winter day.

We’ve gone over a couple of different ways to improve your homes heating power, but they’ve been scattered throughout various posts, so we decided that since we’re on the cusp of actually needing to turn on our heaters again, we would go over some of the best ways to get the most out of your heater this winter without having to break the bank every month in the process.

The best thing you can do is to ensure your furnace and/or boiler is as energy efficient as it can be, which would mean that it would have had to been manufactured sometime in the last couple of years. Since not everyone can afford to replace their main heating components at this time, let’s start with what you can do around your home to optimize your current heating system. Although, as one of the most trusted names for Riverside heating and air, both county, and city, we would be able to get you set up with a new furnace or boiler, ultimately saving you money in the long run.

Make sure your windows are doors are properly sealed. Gaps below doors or between the door and the door jamb can let the hot air your heater has been working so hard to heat up out into the cold winter air. Needless to say, we want all the hot air we pump into the house to stay pretty much where we put it, so sealing up any gaps in windows and doors is a great place to start.

Another great place to start is ensuring your furnace filters are clean. Like your air conditioner, your heater pumps air through your home that first goes through an air filter. Idealistically, these air filters should be cleaned every month during the cold seasons. Unfortunately, most people forget to check the air filters and some aren’t even aware that there are air filters to be changed. A dirty air filter causes the whole system to work harder to pump air through your home, increasing utility costs and wearing down on the equipment itself, ultimately decreasing the entire system’s overall life cycle. Keeping your air filters clean is a good practice for both your central heating and air conditioning systems.

A great little trick I like to do every winter is to switch the direction of my ceiling fans in reverse. Simple thermodynamics states that warm air rises and tends to pool at the ceilings. Reversing the rotation of ceiling fans from counterclockwise to clockwise will push air down instead of pulling it up, forcing the warm air that has accumulated at the ceiling back down to where people tend to be. Running your ceiling fans in reverse can help save you as much as 10% on your monthly heating bills.

During the colder seasons, the thermostat can either be our best friend or our worst enemy. Everyone likes a warm home, but dropping the temperature down by two degrees or so goes a long way in monthly utility savings. Your home doesn’t need to be warm enough to encourage its occupants to wear shorts. Warm and inviting, yes, but it doesn’t need to be hot and uncomfortable. Personally, I like the keep the heat at about 75 degrees.

There’s a lot you can do to help keep your home warm this winter without having to break the bank doing so. While you can have as much insulation and take as many steps to maximize your home’s heating power, the best way to ensure that you don’t get racked by monthly utility bills this winter is to have a central heating system that runs and operates at its best. We all know that cars need regular tune-ups to work properly, and the same is true for your air conditioner and central heating. Give us a call today so we can come out and give you any necessary heating maintenance to ensure you’re running at peak efficiency. If you’re furnace or boiler hasn’t been inspected or maintenance in the last year, then it’s definitely time!

Stay warm this winter, but don’t break the bank doing it.

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