Even in a warmer climate like San Diego, CA, the winter months can get quite chilly. Because of this, you will most likely be relying on your heating system much more regularly as the weather gets colder and colder over the next few months. As a result, you’re probably looking for any possible measures you can take to save yourself money on those pesky heating bills. With this in mind, we’ve put together some tips to help you.
1. Have Your Furnace Maintained
With the small investment of providing professional maintenance for your furnace, you can actually save quite a bit of money on heating bills this winter and beyond. In general, you should aim to get your furnace one of these tune-ups on a yearly basis as they are an extremely important part of properly caring for the appliance.
When a furnace has received this maintenance, it will be able to operate much more efficiently, meaning that it will use up significantly less costly energy and do a better job of heating your home. Additionally, furnaces that receive tune-ups are less prone to malfunctions or breakdowns, and even tend to have longer lifespans. So, in addition to saving money on heating bills in the short term, you will also be in better financial shape down the road.
2. Purchase a Humidifier
Every time you’re able to give your heating system a break, you’re saving a bit of money on energy bills. Even if these breaks are relatively short, they still can add up over time to create significant savings. One great way to give your heating system more rest this winter is by investing in a humidifier.
During the winter in San Diego, the air tends to become much drier. Because of this lack of moisture in the air, it’s more difficult for heat to be transferred around, causing your house to feel colder than it truly is. A humidifier will be able to remedy this by significantly raising the level of moisture in your home’s oxygen. Just like that, it will feel much warmer, but without needing to crank up the thermostat. If you make the choice to invest in a humidifier during the fall, there’s a good chance it will pay for itself during the winter.
3. Use Your Curtains to Your Advantage
You may not realize this, but the curtains in your home can help you conserve energy and save money when used properly. Many homeowners are unaware that their curtains can actually do a very effective job of keeping heat trapped inside, especially if they’re of the thicker or heavier variety. When your curtains are open in the evening, the windows or glass doors will actually let quite a bit of heat escape, forcing you to turn up your thermostat and use up more energy. However, by closing your curtains at night, you can prevent this warmth from escaping, saving you money and making life easier on your heating system.
On the other side of things, when it’s earlier in the day and the sun is shining outside, it’s actually beneficial to leave your curtains open instead. In addition to letting all of that natural light fill up your home, it will also allow for warmth from the sunlight to enter. This is a great way of heating your home without using up costly energy or putting wear and tear on your furnace. In the San Diego area, even during the winter, there are going to be plenty of days when the sun is shining. This way, you can use those days to your financial advantage.
4. Purchase a Space Heater
If you and the other members of your household tend to spend large chunks of time in one or two specific areas of your home, then investing in one or more electric heaters can be an excellent way to save some money this winter. For example, if you and your family spend several hours in the living room relaxing each night, having the heat for the entire house cranked up is wasting quite a bit of energy, and those costs can add up quickly.
However, if you were to have a space heater set up in the living room, you could simply turn it on when you’re spending time there and turn the main thermostat down. Space heaters will, of course, still use up some energy, but typically, the cost of running one is minuscule when compared to the cost of keeping your furnace on high.
5. Clean Out Your Vents
To do its job and keep you warm, your furnace needs to be able to consistently circulate warm air throughout your home. To do this, it utilizes the vents that are spread out around the household. However, if these vents become too clogged up with particles of dust and dirt or other loose debris, it makes it much harder for your furnace to circulate air effectively. This forces the appliance to work much harder to do its job, putting more strain and wear on the unit while burning up excessive energy.
To avoid these spikes in your monthly heating bills, make a point once a month to clean out all of the vents around your home. To do so, use a screwdriver to remove the protective covers, and use a vacuum cleaner with a long extension hose to thoroughly clean each vent out.
6. Replace Your Furnace’s Air Filter
Each furnace is equipped with an air filter that does the important job of preventing the appliance from becoming clogged up. This air filter catches and traps all of the dirt and debris that would otherwise make its way into the heating system. Over time, though, if not changed out regularly, the air filter will itself become overly packed with these accumulated particles. When this happens, it will become much more difficult for the furnace to suck air through the filter, forcing it to work much harder to do so.
In addition to burning up more energy, this causes it to take on more wear and tear, leading to a shorter lifespan and a higher chance of expensive repairs and breakdowns down the line. Fortunately, this is easy to avoid. All you need to do is clean your furnace’s air filter each month, and when it reaches the point where cleaning isn’t viable, replace it with a new one.
Since opening in 1989, Friar's Heating and Air has been committed to offering residents of San Diego, CA, high-quality heating and cooling services. Our one goal has always been to provide great work at an affordable rate, and we strive to continue doing so every day. We are a family-owned and -operated business, and we make an effort to treat our clients like family as well by providing friendly and personalized customer service. In addition to our heating and cooling work, we also offer services related to indoor air quality and purification.
If you have HVAC needs, be proactive and have them handled by professionals before the winter arrives. Give us a call at Friar's Heating and Air, and make an appointment with one of our friendly technicians.