The average homeowner waits until right before the heating season begins to start considering a heating fuel conservation plan. Heating cost can consume as much as 65% of the average home’s seasonal energy expense. A water heater can consume up to an additional 20%. With up to 85% of your utility expense at stake, don’t you think it would be a better idea to examine methods to conserve on these expenses earlier in the year? By implementing some projects and purchases during the off season, you can often get a better price on heating conservation products and services. This could result in thousands of dollars of additional savings, depending on the heating fuel conservation plan you adopt for your home.
Here are 7 projects you may want to consider when drafting your home heating fuel conservation plan;
Improve your home’s insulation. The best time to do this is in the spring when contractors are not very busy and material cost is lower. When choosing insulation select the area of your home that would best benefit, based on what you experienced during the previous winter season. Select the right type and brand of product for your area. The R-value (resistance to heat loss rating) is one of the most important measurements to consider. A heating contractor or a knowledgeable hardware person can offer you some good advice in this area.
You can plant trees and shrubs around your property that can serve as windbreakers. Talk to a landscaping contractor to find out what types of trees and shrubs will complement your existing landscape plan and offer the best protection for their intended purpose.
Have you considered interior decorating changes to your home to increase your heating fuel conservation? Draperies, window shades, and blinds prevent heat from escaping through the windows and block cold from entering your dwelling. The type of material these window treatments are constructed of will greatly influence your fuel savings. The heavier the material they are constructed of the better.
Automatic flue stack dampers on hot water heater and heating system exhaust flue’s conserve heat by closing the flue pipe when the system is not exhausting. This can result in a savings of up to 5% to 7% on you’re your heating expense. Heat escapes through the flues when they remain open. The automatic flue stack prevents this.
This is an old stand by that offers outstanding benefits, but one many people still have not implemented…install clock thermostats that automatically reduce the thermostat setting at certain times during the day. By reducing the house temperature during times when it is unnecessary to maintain a comfortable temperature, you can drastically reduce your home heating fuel consumption.
Reducing the temperature of your water heater to 100 degrees or lower and minimizing the use of hot water appliances are easy tactics to implement that offer sizable fuel savings. It may require some habit changes, but it will be worth it.
Did you know that a room with less than 35% humidity level will still feel cold even when it is well heated? Adding a humidifier to your heating system or placing individual units in the rooms your family frequent most will aid in that rooms comfort and reduce heating fuel consumption.
It does not take a lot of work to reduce you home heating fuel consumption. It does take some thought and some action, but in the long run, you will be better off for it. Don’t wait until you are about to turn on your furnace to ward off the ravages of the winter cold to think about starting your home fuel heating conservation plan…do it now! Aren’t there better things you can do with your money instead of spending it unnecessarily on high fuel heating cost?
Resource: 101 Ways to Maximize Your Homes Value by Jon Erickson