There’s nothing like the utility bill in January to make homeowners think about lowering their Boston heating bills. For the most part, how much you spend on heating will be primarily related to how you heat your home and your home’s construction. Other factors, like insulation and new windows can also have an impact on your out-of-pocket costs.
If you want to get serious about lowering your heating bills, there is a range of options available. There’s no single solution; instead, the solution that works best for your home will depend upon what you already have, the way your home is constructed and how much you have available to invest in the long-term heating plan for your home.
If you already have a boiler or hot-water heating system, using a high-efficiency boiler or adding an outdoor reset control may help your heating system work more efficiently and provide more even heat distribution. If you have a gas furnace, replacing an old, inefficient model with a high-efficiency one, and adding insulation and weather-stripping to doors and windows may help your home retain more heat. You may also find that adding supplemental heat to certain areas of your home may improve the overall comfort of your residence and enable you to cut down on the use of your primary heating plant.
Using a programmable thermostat gives you a lot of control over your heating bills. You can use a programmable thermostat to ensure that your heat always gets turned down during the periods when you’re routinely out of your home. In addition, a programmable thermostat can help prevent your home from becoming too cold. If you operate a programmable thermostat, don’t let the interior temperature fall below 62°F. This will help avoid frozen piping in the coldest areas of your home.
Maintaining ductwork and radiators (if you have them) can also have an impact on the efficiency of your heating plant. Change furnace filters where applicable and have your system checked for problem spots, like cracked heat exchangers or broken valves. If you perform regular maintenance on your home heating system, you’re likely to be rewarded with more reliable, more even heating and less costly utility bills in the coldest part of the year.