5 Ways To Save On Winter Home Bills

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This time of year, life starts getting really expensive. Between Thanksgiving and Christmas, plus life bills, it can feel like money is tight. But it doesn’t have to. You can make a few small changes that add up in a big way, especially over time.

You can make adjustments in all aspects of your life, but we’re going to focus on things that are related to your home right now.

5 Ways To Save On Winter Home Bills

1. Keep The Temperature Low.
Heating your home is the biggest expensive you’ll encounter over the winter. Regardless of if you use electricity, gas, or wood to heat your home, the expense of it adds up. The best thing you can do is keep your temperature low. If you have a thermostat, set it to a reasonable temperature. And don’t heat a home no one is in. Sure, it would be nice to have a toasty home when you walk in from work, but that doesn’t mean your thermostat has to be running all day when you’re out. Set it to turn on with enough time to heat the home before you walk in but not to be on 24/7.

If you have a two-story home and each floor has a different thermostat, you can set them to different temperatures. There should be an instruction booklet you can consult to figure out exactly how to set them.

If you get cold, try putting a blanket on before you put on the thermostat. If you don’t have to use electricity, you’ll save money.

2. Open The Oven After You Cook.
If you have small children or pets, you’ll have to be very careful with this tip. But if you cook in the oven, there will still be heat inside when you’re done cooking. Instead of just letting it live and die inside the oven, let it heat up your home. Open the oven when you’re done baking and the heat will dissipate into your home.

Now, don’t keep the oven open completely because you risk banging your legs into that door or having a pet jump inside. Instead, just open it a crack, an inch or so will do, and the heat will still escape, meaning you can pass less in your electric bill to heat your home.

3. Turn Off Your Sprinkler.
During the spring and summer, you want to set your irrigation system so it waters your lawn and keeps it beautiful. During the winter, though, you don’t need to worry about that. Turn your system off. You don’t want to be watering brown grass during the winter or, even worse, grass that is under snow. 

You’ll save water, which means you’ll save on your water bill.

4. Change Your Air Filter.
At the beginning of each season, you should change your air filter. Those things get so dirty throughout use. The dirtier they are, the harder your HVAC system has to work. And the harder it has to work, the more energy it uses, resulting in a higher electric bill. During the winter, your HVAC system works very hard to heat your home. Don’t make it work harder because of a dirty filter.

And, keeping with the same notion, clean out the filter in your dryer too. You need to clean that more often than your HVAC air filter. You should do it after every cycle. Lint will built up in your dryer’s filter, and that makes the dryer work harder, and, just as the HVAC filter, makes it use more energy — causing you a higher electric bill. This isn’t a winter-specific tip, though, but still good to mention.

5. Use Energy-Efficient Christmas Lights.
The first Christmas Pete and I were in North Carolina, I had two strings of lights on our street-facing windows. My favorite part of the day was turning on the lights on the windows and our Christmas tree. I would leave them on until I was done working — at 3am. When we got our electric bill in January, it was so high. I actually called our electric company because I thought someone was siphoning our electricity somehow. 

When I called, there was a recording that said there was heavy call volume. And then suggested that your electric bill may be higher if you had Christmas lights going. I heard that and hung up. Yup, that was our issue. So, in order to save this month but still have a beautifully decorated home, purchase energy-efficient Christmas lights. And set them on a timer as well, so you don’t accidentally leave them on all night.

What do you do to save on winter home bills? Be sure to let us know in the comments.

This post was inspired by Capital Alliance. Find out more about the Capital Alliance College Scholarship. Winning it would be a great way to save on college tuition.