Skip to Content

Prepare for cold weather utility bills

Community Choice Credit Union logo

Published on October 29, 2018
 

Don't let cold weather utility bills get you down

Tips to save on utility billsThere’s nothing better than making a plan to save money. If your utility bills in winter put a crunch on your budget, these tips to reduce energy usage can help.

Turn down the thermostat

You can save as much as 10 percent a year on heating and cooling by simply turning your thermostat back seven to 10 degrees for eight hours a day from its normal setting. Those eight hours could be while you are away at work or school, when sunlight is warming your house, or when you’re asleep under a pile of cozy blankets. For every two degrees, you can save an average of three percent on your energy bill.

Seal up your house to keep cold air out, and warm air in

Caulking and weatherstripping help seal your house up, keeping the warm air in. These are affordable DIY ways to improve energy efficiency and can save you about 7.5 percent on your energy bill! About $240 can cover weather stripping all your windowsand doors.

Additionally, minimize the air that escapes by closing the damper on your fireplace when it’s not in use, and use bath and kitchen fans sparingly. This can save another 10 percent on your energy bill.

Change your furnace filters regularly

Your furnace or heating system is responsible for about half your energy bill. Changing the filters every three months means your furnace doesn’t have to work as hard, saving you energy and money in the long run. A clean filter costs about $20 and can lower energy use by as much as 15 percent according to the U.S. Department of Energy. That means of another 7.5 percent savings on your monthly bills.

Get a pro to test your energy efficiency

Many utility companies offer free energy audits, which can help you figure out how much energy your home uses and take steps to increase efficiency. Start by contacting your utility company or find an auditor near you. According to Energy.gov, an energy audit can show you ways to save five to 30 percent on your utility bills.

Get free heat from the sun

Warm sunshine can heat your home, for free! Open curtains on south- and west-facing windows during the day to warm your interior rooms and surfaces. Then close your curtains at night to help keep the heat from escaping. This could help save another one or two percent on your energy bill in colder months.

If you are having trouble keeping up with higher winter utility bills, ask your utility company about a payment plan. Many companies offer a year-round plan that spreads costs out over all 12 months.

Article provided by Greenpath, a financial education and counseling service.

Let's Connect

Open available connect options Close the connect options

External Link Disclaimer

You will be linking to another website not owned or operated by Community Choice Credit Union. Community Choice Credit Union is not responsible for the availability or content of this website and does not represent either the linked website or you, should you enter into a transaction. The inclusion of any hyperlink does not imply any endorsement, investigation, verification or monitoring by Community Choice Credit Union of any information in any hyperlinked site. We encourage you to review their privacy and security policies which may differ from Community Choice Credit Union.

If you "Continue", the link will open in a new window.

Email Disclaimer

Continue Close the disclaimer modal window
Documents in Portable Document Format (.PDF) require Adobe Acrobat Reader 5.0 or higher to view. Download it now.