10 Ways to Keep Your House Warm While Using Less Electricity

how to lower heating bill in winter

Saving electricity in the winter season can be a challenging task for most households. This task was even made more difficult as most work and schooling activities are now transitioned to remote setup during this pandemic. More people now are spending more time indoors. 

To keep you warm in this cold season and keep your energy bills from ballooning, it is wise to know and apply some simple energy-saving tips that can help you save money this winter. Fortunately, there are ways to cut heating and other energy costs and still keep our homes comfortable as the weather gets colder. 

1. Let the Sunshine In

Nothing is as cheap as using the free source of energy which is the sun that can naturally heat up your space. Let the sunshine in during the day to let some heat occupy your indoor space by opening your drapes. This can help you save energy and lower your energy bills. At nighttime, be sure to close your drapes to avoid drafts and heat loss through the glass.

2. Change the Ceiling Fan’s Blade Rotation

Changing your ceiling fan’s blade rotation can help you keep your indoor space warm as well as increase your energy savings. A ceiling fan’s conventional design is usually set in a counterclockwise direction to push the air downwards, creating a heating effect.

Most ceiling fans have a reverse switch that can make the rotation clockwise. By changing the fan’s rotation in the clockwise direction, the motion itself creates an updraft, pushing air collected near your ceiling downward which can heat up the rest of the room.

3. Recondition Your Wood-Burning Fireplace

Your wood-burning fireplace should be sealed properly to minimize or reduce the heat from escaping. Also, it is wise to close the damper when you are not using your fireplace. Keeping your damper open will allow some heat to escape through the chimney. 

When using your fireplace, you can minimize the heat by opening up the damper firebox’s bottom or by slightly opening up the closest window by roughly an inch. Then you need to close the doors of the room.

If you are not using the fireplace at all, you can also close and seal the chimney flue. If you do use it, then it is recommended to install some doors made of tempered glass as well as a heat-air exchange system capable of blowing hot air back into your room.

4. Use a Portable Space Heater

Using a portable space heater will save you a long way in keeping your most occupied house areas warm. It is wise to heat up only the area where most people gather such as the living room and bedroom. Electric space heaters have high energy efficiency in heating up closed-off areas as there is no heat loss through ducts or combustion. 

Space heaters are an excellent choice to warm-up areas in that you only occupy for a short period of time, such as a garage or bathrooms. Its portability makes it a very convenient tool in heating specific areas in the house but when it comes to heating the entire house, a space heater is less efficient than natural furnaces or heat pumps.

5. Weather-Proof the Windows

Windows are the major source of the worst air leaks, drafts, and heat loss. The use of weatherstrips and sealing materials will keep the cool air from coming in and avoid losing too much heat. Using weatherstrips can be quite expensive but will still remain functional over the years. It can also help you provide significant long term savings.

Another cheap option would be to insulate your windows in winter by sealing the frame with clear plastic cling wrap. Window film is cheap, easy to apply, easy to remove in spring, and can be found at any home improvement store or online. It will only cost a few bucks to insulate every window in your home, but the savings on your heating bill will be big. 

Ensure that your plastic is tightly sealed to the frame to minimize cold air infiltration. If you still feel a draft coming from your windows after you’ve weatherized them, try installing insulating shades or drapes on them.

6. Wear Winter Wardrobes

One of the practical winter energy saving tips is to wear winter wardrobes. It is important to warm up your body first rather than warming your house. Wearing winter wardrobes such as sweaters, mittens, and warm socks will keep you warm in the cold weather. You can also stay warm during sleep by using thick blankets and bedsheets.

7. Use LED Lights

Quality LED lights last longer, are more durable and offer comparable or better light quality than other types of lighting. LED lighting is one of the most energy-efficient lighting options available right now. It uses 75% less energy than standard incandescent lights and can last 25 times longer. They’ll keep you well lit for your video meetings while helping you save money. 

Just one LED bulb may save you $50 or more over the course of its lifetime—the average household has at least 40 light sockets, so your savings will add up quickly.

8. Refrain from Using Exhaust Fan

One way to conserve energy during winter is to refrain from using an exhaust fan. It eliminates the heat that could potentially warm up your place. Use your exhaust fans sparingly, and turn them off when not in use to ensure your home’s warmth isn’t being pulled away.

9. Install a Programmable Thermostat

Smart thermostats are high-tech ways to save electricity in the winter. Its savings come from its ability to fine-tune your heating and cooling systems and optimize when your furnace runs. A smart thermostat is a Wi-Fi enabled device that automatically adjusts temperature settings in your home for peak energy efficiency. 

You can program the smart thermostat to turn down while you’re sleeping or when you’re away and then set it warmer for just before your arrival back home at the end of the day. You can reduce your energy bill in winter without sacrificing comfort.

You can adjust the times you turn on the heating or air conditioning according to a pre-set schedule. Programmable thermostats can store and repeat multiple daily settings (six or more temperature settings a day) that you can manually override without affecting the rest of the daily or weekly program. 

It is also noteworthy to know that some energy providers might offer exclusive discounts on smart thermostats, so check with them as well. 

10. Watch Out for Drafts

Drafts not only make it harder to properly warm your home, but they also can eat away at your heating budget. Drafts may have various sources such as the doors and windows but they may also come from the unnoticeable areas in the house. 

Air leaks can also occur into or out of the house through the cracks and gaps inside your home, such as electrical outlets, light fixtures, baseboards, and attic hatches. To prevent drafts, it is recommended to install weather stripping materials and proper insulation to help keep the cold at bay. 

Seal around these mentioned areas to make your home less drafty and keep warm air inside. Caulking leaks can save an average household 10% to 20% on annual cooling and heating bills, or up to $166 per year. Installation of weatherstripping in your windows can save you an additional 5% to 10% annually on heating and cooling bills, or up to $83 per year.

To keep the cold away, make sure there’s proper weather stripping installed under your doors and high-quality insulation in your walls. 


What should you set your thermostat at in winter?

For winter, the ideal thermostat temperature is 68 degrees Fahrenheit when you’re at home. 68 degrees is a good room temperature while you’re awake at home, but recommends lowering it while you’re asleep or away. Lowering your thermostat 10-15 degrees for eight hours can reduce your heating bill by 5-15%.

How can I make my home more energy efficient in the winter?

There are several ways to make your home energy efficient in the winter. Some of the low-cost strategies you can do to your home are: (1) lowering your thermostat temperature; (2) reduce heat loss from the fireplace; (3) check for air leaks and drafts ; (4) switch to heavier curtains (5) switch to energy-efficient LED light bulbs, and (6) clean your air filters.

Some of the big-ticket ideas are: (1) adding insulation to your attic, (2) installing solar panels ; (3) installing storm windows and doors; (4) performing energy audits; (5) buying energy star products; and (6) tuning up your HVAC system.

Final Words

There are a lot of useful energy-saving tips for winter months without wearing out your pockets and at the same time, they can help you have year-round savings. By doing the given winter energy-saving tips, you are not only doing yourself a favor but also the environment by promoting the use of clean energy and reducing too much energy consumption.

The funny thing about saving energy in winter is that many of these techniques will also help you save money in summer. It’s all about keeping outside air out, inside air in, and minimizing energy waste. Insulated curtains, air sealing, LED lighting, and smart thermostats should all be part of your year-round strategy for maximum energy use and maximum savings. 

Implement these given tips and keep track of how it effectively lowers your monthly energy bill. You will be surprised at how much you can save.

Updated on