Winters in Vancouver, BC generally involve cozy days inside, hot chocolate and holiday time with the family. But it can also lead to pricey heating bills. This winter, don’t let expensive heating costs get the better of you. There are many ways to cut your residential heating costs, without freezing. Here are our top 5 tips to stay warm at home this winter, without breaking the bank.
Invest in a Space Heater
Space heaters are compact, portable and easy to use. If you have a smaller home or apartment, a space heater could be a great, main source of heat. You could turn the heat off completely and still stay warm. Likewise, if you have a larger home, space heaters are an excellent way to heat the room you spend the most time in.
You can find affordable space heaters at your local hardware store. They use electricity, but they are certainly a better option than heating the rooms of your home that you do not visit frequently. Simple space heaters are also affordable and range in price from $20-$200. There are more pricey options with larger ranges and additional features as well.
Check for Drafts
In Vancouver, most modern homes have double-paned windows. However, glass is still not the best material for heat retention. It is important to carefully inspect your window and door sealant, (interior and exterior) and seal any areas that cause drafts.
Ensure that all windows and doors close properly and test for drafts. An easy way to do this is to light a candle and place it on your windowsill. If it flickers intensely, there is likely air coming in from the outside. Most drafts and cracks can be fixed with simple caulking. Learn more about sealing windows for winter in our post about additional ways to save money on heating.
If you feel that your windows need further insulation, there are many hardware stores that carry window film. Window film can work to keep heat in by providing an extra barrier that sits against the glass. It is also useful in the summer for keeping the home cool and moderating internal temperatures.
You can also purchase thermal curtains for your windows and glass doors. These are thick curtains that help to regulate the temperature of your home by keeping the heat in.
Furnace and Boiler Maintenance
Changing furnace filters every few months keeps your heating system running at peak performance. However, it’s always a good idea to get an expert heating maintenance check to prepare for the winter months.
At Hillcrest Plumbing & Heating we repair all major furnace and boiler brands. There are many reasons that your furnace or boiler may require maintenance. Our HV/AC professionals can help to identify and repair problems such as cracked or leaking pipes, dirty air filters, corroded flame sensors and much more.
Sometimes it’s best to completely replace old heating systems. They could be using up more energy due to old age and inefficiencies. Visit our article that discusses when it’s time to replace your furnace for a list of the signs to watch out for when considering furnace replacement. Our team can assist in removal, as well as the installation of new heating systems. You may consider updating to more energy-efficient heating systems such as a high-efficiency furnace. Learn more about this new, groundbreaking way to heat your home in our article “Does a High-Efficiency Furnace Save Money?”
Lower the Thermostat at Night
The heat does not need to be on at all hours of the day. If you are looking to cut residential heating costs you can lower the thermostat when you leave the house, or when you are sleeping. This is an excellent way to save energy as well as reduce your heating costs. Simply adjust the thermostat and turn off the heat when you leave for work, school, or right before you go to bed. If you are concerned about leaving the heat off at night, you can prepare with extra blankets and cozy pajamas. Your body will adjust to the temperature as you sleep, and you will save money at the same time.
Watch your Water Temperature
Your hot water heater could be to blame for the rising costs on your heating bill. A simple trick is to turn the boiler temperature down slightly. Even lowering the temperature by 10 degrees will make a difference, and it won’t be noticeable.
Another excellent way to save money on heat is to invest in a low flow showerhead. The less hot water you use, the less heat is required. Low flow showerheads are also an excellent, eco-friendly option for your home. Learn more about additional energy-efficient heating tips for winter.
Visit Hillcrest Plumbing & Heating
There are many different ways to cut your residential heating costs this winter. At Hillcrest Plumbing & Heating our dedicated team is available 24/7 to assist with your winter plumbing and heating needs. Whether it’s a simple maintenance check or a furnace or boiler replacement, we are committed to providing excellent service throughout Vancouver and the Lower Mainland. Contact us online or call today at 604-879-1415 to book your appointment.