Six Tips to Reduce Your Heating Bill

The recent decline of oil prices may make us breath a little easier when we turn on the heat this winter. However, if you are among the 32% households in the Northeast that depend on heating oil, you can expect to pay 7% more this winter to heat your house. According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, for natural gas:

Nationwide, 58 percent of all households depend on natural gas as their primary heating fuel.  Despite increased natural gas consumption this winter, households in all regions will pay significantly less for natural gas this winter due to lower prices. For example, in the Midwest, about 79 percent of households rely on natural gas to heat their homes, and this upcoming winter, these households can expect to pay nearly 14 percent less in natural gas expenditures relative to last winter. Lower expenditures in this region are the result of a projected 18-percent decline in price compared with last winter, even as Midwest natural gas consumption is expected to grow by 4 percent. In the West, about 66 percent of all households rely on natural gas, and these households can expect to pay 10 percent less for natural gas this winter, even though consumption is expected to increase by 2 percent.

For heating oil:

Nationwide, only 7 percent of U.S. households depend on heating oil for winter fuel. However, most of those households that do heat with heating oil are in the Northeast, where 32 percent of households use heating oil as their primary heating fuel.  In this region, households are projected to pay about 7 percent more in heating oil expenditures compared to last winter. Midwest households relying on heating oil can expect to pay 6 percent more than last winter, but relatively few households in the Midwest (3 percent) use heating oil as their primary fuel.

There’s an article today on that offers some money-saving tips to get you prepared for a cold winter.

  • Schedule a home-heating inspection: The system should be checked out every year for safety and efficiency.
  • Seal up your home: Small air leaks can pad your home-heating bill.
  • Use that thermostat: Using a programmable thermostat saves money.
  • Shop around for home-heating oil: Search for low-price suppliers in your area, ask for a senior citizen discount or join a fuel cooperative for locked-in, near-wholesale rates.
  • Block off unused rooms: The less space you need to heat, the lower your bill.
  • Turn on the fan: Use your fan’s reverse mechanism to keep warm air circulating through the room.

And don’t forget to check the battery, breaks, and fluids of your car as well.

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3 Responses to “Six Tips to Reduce Your Heating Bill”

  1. John Green |  May 13, 2008 at 10:29 am

    Home Heating Tips

    Heating is the single biggest energy use in homes. A well maintained heating system will hold down fuel costs and provide reliable comfort.
    Thermostats should be located on an inside wall or where they will not be subject to draft or heat.
    Use door snakes to reduce drafts.
    Block off your open fireplace when not in use.
    Capture as much sunlight as possible.
    Close curtains before dark to keep heat in.
    Use and extra blanket if a bit cold.
    The many small openings in a home can add up to big heat losses. Caulking and weather stripping cracks in walls and floors, windows and doors will save fuel and money.
    Use ceiling fans to distribute the heat throughout your home.
    Proper insulation in walls, ceilings and floors also significantly reduces the loss of heat to the outdoors. Insulation will pay for itself in fuel cost savings and home comfort.
    Storm windows and doors are big energy and money savers. They can reduce heating costs by as much as !5% by preventing warm air from escaping to the outside. Double glazed and thermopane windows can minimize heat escape.
    Water Heating Tips

    Fix dripping faucets and start saving money today.
    Adjust the thermostat on your hot water heater so the water at the tap is no more than 50 degrees C.
    Use cold water when filling the kettle and only heat the amount you need.
    Take showers instead of baths and save 5%.
    Wrap your hot water heater with an insulation wrapper and save 5% or $58 per year.
    Fit water saving shower heads and save $48 per year on average.