We all have to adjust to lower incomes, even if it means spending less on home heating. Running the heating at last year’s temperature is not an option, something has to change . . .
Buy a lockable thermostat
Consider the cost of a new thermostat that you can lock at a lower temperature than your children would turn it up to. Even if you can turn the thermostat a few degrees lower you can save a considerable amount of energy each month. If your family members are wearing tee-shirts in December then you can safely turn down your thermostat and tell them to wear something warmer.
Using space heating devices
Heating the entire house can be quite expensive. If you already have a gas or electric powered boiler powering your forced air, pumped hot water or steam heating system, look for options such as space heaters. Modern halogen heaters cost much less than other radiant heaters or fan heaters do to run. These are inexpensive and need little maintenance, can be set up very easily and keep you warm for less than a central heating system would cost to run.
Winters are the best time to spend some extra money on woollens. Did you know you could save yourself from the bitter cold by adding more layers rather than wearing a single layer of thick clothing? Air is a poor conductor of heat. The more layers that you add the more cushions of air you will have between your skin and the outside air. More cushions of air means your body will radiate less heat. It is simple physics; heat will transfer from an object that is warmer than the surroundings. In this case your body is warmer than the surroundings. But the air cushions will prevent that from happening quickly.
Stay active during the winter. The more you stay stationary, the more heat you will radiate. Staying physically active means doing the household chores. Do all your cleaning, moving, shoving, mopping and anything else that you normally put away for later in the year. More activity means your body will generate more heat. Result is you stay warm.
Check your insulation
Have you checked the insulation of your home recently? Before winter sets in and you realize that your electricity / gas bills have skyrocketed, check the insulation of your home. A properly insulated home will need less energy to keep warm, check for any leaks, gaps or holes that you have forgotten to plug.
Adjust your gas contract price
Call up your gas company and negotiate a better price for yourself. There is no harm in asking and if you don’t ask you will never get a better deal.
Heavy curtains helps to keep the heat inside the room, they are also great for insulation. Use them in every room and especially in the rooms which have large Windows. Open the curtains during the morning when the sun is shining so that the rooms can benefit from natural heat and draw them when it is getting dark.
Now is the time to bring out those rugs and carpets that you purchased when you saw them reduced; have them vacuumed and ready for the winter and have them in place by the time the chill starts.
Phil Turner has been through many a cold winter without the heating on, just wearing jumpers, long johns and a woolly hat. He still uses halogen heaters in the office and bedroom because it delays switching on the heating