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How To Cut Heating Costs

Posted on November 8, 2023 by admin

As the crisp winds of fall and the chilly winters of Kansas City approach, homeowners often find themselves facing rising heating costs and needing tips on how to cut heating costs. Fortunately, you don’t have to break the bank to stay warm and comfortable. 

Here at Lancaster Brothers Heating and Cooling, we have been Kansas City’s HVAC experts for over 23 years. Read on for our insight about the most common reasons homeowners pay too much for heating during the cold seasons. By addressing these issues, you can keep your home cozy without burning a hole in your pocket.

Inadequate Insulation

Inadequate insulation is a silent culprit that can wreak havoc on your home’s energy bills during the cold winter months. Imagine your home as a cozy haven against the chill of the outside world. Proper insulation acts as a warm, protective blanket, helping to trap and maintain the heat produced by your heating system within the confines of your living spaces. When this insulation is lacking or in poor condition, it’s like having gaps in that warm blanket, letting precious heat escape into the cold abyss outside.

Here’s how:

1. Heat Escapes: Without sufficient insulation, heat naturally gravitates toward cooler areas. So, when your home’s insulation is subpar or non-existent in certain areas, it creates channels through which heat can escape. These heat leaks can be found in various places, such as walls, ceilings, floors, and even around windows and doors.

2. Increased Heating Demand: As the heat leaks out, your home’s interior temperature begins to drop. In response, your heating system springs into action, working diligently to maintain the desired warmth. However, it has to work much harder and for more extended periods to compensate for the lost heat, ultimately consuming more energy in the process.

3. Higher Energy Bills: The longer and harder your heating system runs, the more energy it consumes, leading to increased energy bills. This is not only costly but also places additional strain on your heating equipment, potentially shortening its lifespan and increasing the risk of breakdowns.

To tackle this issue and prevent costly energy bills, it’s crucial to assess your home’s insulation thoroughly. Investing in proper insulation and ensuring that it’s well-maintained can go a long way in helping your heating system operate efficiently. By keeping your home well-insulated, you create a more comfortable and energy-efficient living environment, cutting heating costs and reducing your energy consumption.

Old and Inefficient Heating Systems

Outdated heating systems present a double-edged challenge for homeowners, as they not only lack the energy efficiency of newer models but also gradually succumb to the inevitable wear and tear that accumulates over the years. This combination results in reduced performance and higher energy consumption, both of which can significantly impact your comfort and your wallet.

Furnaces, in particular, are known to have an average lifespan of 15 to 20 years. As your furnace approaches this age, it’s prudent to consider the implications of an aging heating system. Lancaster Brothers Heating and Cooling understands the importance of this assessment, and we recommend taking the following steps:

1. Inspection: If your furnace is nearing the 15 to 20-year mark, it’s high time for a comprehensive inspection. Our experts will meticulously evaluate the state of your heating system to determine whether it’s still operating efficiently or if signs of wear and tear are affecting its performance.

2. Maintenance: Regular maintenance can often extend the life of a heating system, so our team will provide any necessary maintenance services to improve your furnace’s condition and efficiency. This step can be a cost-effective way to keep your current system functioning optimally.

3. Assessment: In cases where the wear and tear have reached a point where your furnace’s efficiency is compromised, our experts will be forthright in their assessment. If the furnace is no longer up to the task of efficiently heating your home, it may be time for a replacement.

4. Expert Installation: If we recommend a replacement, Lancaster Brothers Heating and Cooling has you covered. We offer state-of-the-art installation services and provide a range of energy-efficient heating equipment options. By upgrading to a newer, more efficient heating system, you not only enhance your comfort but also make a smart, long-term investment in reducing your energy costs.

The decision to replace your furnace is ultimately an investment in your home’s comfort, energy efficiency, and financial well-being. With our expertise and top-notch services, Lancaster Brothers Heating and Cooling can guide you through the process, ensuring that your heating system meets your needs while helping you save on energy costs in the long run. Want more information about replacing your furnace? Read our previous blog article, “Is It Time To Replace Your Furnace?”.

Poorly Sealed Doors and Windows

During the chilly winter months, a significant amount of warmth escapes through gaps around your windows and doors. It’s almost like throwing your hard-earned money out the window. What you may not realize is that every air leak forces your furnace or heat pump to toil harder and longer, resulting in higher utility bills. In fact, these overlooked gaps can contribute to a substantial 20 to 30 percent of your winter heating expenses! 

Fortunately, you can easily resolve air leaks with a range of products available at your local hardware store. Consider using weatherstripping, caulk, expanding foam sealant, and door sweeps, among other options. These are relatively straightforward do-it-yourself projects that won’t dent your budget.

By taking the initiative to seal these air leaks in your home, you have the potential to reduce your winter heating bills by as much as 30 percent! It’s a smart, cost-effective way to keep your home cozy and your finances in check.

Irregular Maintenance

Regular maintenance is a lifeline for your heating system, the key to ensuring that it operates efficiently and cost-effectively, especially during the colder seasons. 

Here’s why regular maintenance is so vital:

1. Efficiency Preservation: Over time, your heating system accumulates dust, dirt, and wear and tear. This buildup can lead to reduced efficiency, making your system work harder to produce the same level of warmth. This extra effort translates to higher energy consumption and, consequently, elevated heating bills. Regular maintenance serves as a preventive measure, keeping your system clean and in optimal working condition, thereby preserving its efficiency.

2. Performance Consistency: When your heating system is well-maintained, it delivers consistent and reliable performance. You won’t have to worry about fluctuations in temperature or sudden breakdowns during the coldest days of the year. This peace of mind is invaluable, ensuring that your home remains a comfortable sanctuary throughout the winter.

3. Longer Lifespan: Proper maintenance can significantly extend the lifespan of your heating system. By addressing minor issues and wear and tear before they escalate into major problems, you reduce the risk of having to replace your system prematurely, saving you the cost of frequent repairs and a new installation.

Lancaster Brothers Heating and Cooling places great emphasis on the importance of regular maintenance for your heating system. We strongly recommend scheduling inspections and tune-ups twice a year to ensure that your system remains in top shape. Our skilled technicians are trained to perform thorough assessments, clean your system, replace filters if needed, and address any minor issues before they become major headaches.

By investing in routine maintenance, you not only ensure the longevity and reliability of your heating system but also keep your energy bills in check. It’s a proactive approach that not only makes sense for your wallet but also ensures that your home remains a cozy, energy-efficient haven, regardless of the cold weather outside. We offer convenient, money-saving maintenance plans, which take the hassle out of scheduling your HVAC tune-ups. 

Misusing Your Thermostat

The thermostat setting in your home plays a pivotal role in how efficiently you manage your heating system during the colder months. While it’s tempting to crank up the heat to stay toasty, setting your thermostat too high can have a substantial impact on your heating bills. That’s why Lancaster Brothers Heating and Cooling emphasizes the importance of finding the right balance – a temperature setting that keeps you comfortable without causing your energy costs to skyrocket.

Here’s why finding that sweet spot on your thermostat is essential:

1. Cost Considerations: Every degree you raise your thermostat above what’s necessary results in increased energy consumption and, consequently, higher heating bills. It’s a direct relationship: the higher the setting, the more energy your system consumes, and the more you pay on your monthly bills. This can add up significantly over the winter months.

2. Energy Efficiency: Cranking up your thermostat setting won’t hasten the room’s temperature rise. Too often, homeowners increase and lower the thermostat temperatures, depending on how they feel at any given moment. This practice should be avoided as it places undue strain on the furnace without providing any additional advantages. It’s best to find a more moderate thermostat setting and keep your thermostat set at a consistent level. This will lower your energy consumption and save you money. 

Setting your thermostat at an energy-efficient and comfortable level is a simple yet powerful way to manage your heating costs during the colder months. Lancaster Brothers Heating and Cooling encourages homeowners to find that balance by being mindful of the temperature setting. It’s a small change that can lead to substantial savings and a cozier, more cost-effective winter.

Expert HVAC Service Can Help Lower Your Energy Bills

When it comes to keeping your home warm during the cold seasons without breaking the bank, addressing these common issues can make a significant difference. Lancaster Brothers Heating and Cooling, as Kansas City’s trusted experts, advise regular maintenance, proper thermostat use, energy-efficient upgrades, and insulation improvements to keep your heating costs in check. By taking proactive steps to improve your home’s energy efficiency, you can enjoy a cozy, comfortable winter without the hefty heating bills.
If you’re in the Kansas City area and want to get in touch with Lancaster Brothers Heating and Cooling, we can be reached at (913) 851-3399, or visit our website today!

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