There’s some good news for the entire country: the Energy Department predicts heating costs across the nation for the upcoming 2014-2015 winter. Nearly half of a home’s yearly energy goes to heating and cooling; that energy use can equal a good chunk of change. The Energy Department’s prediction takes into account the current and estimated costs of fuel sources, as well as the predicted weather for the season.
How Much Will I Save on Heat?
The amount of savings the average American will accumulate will depend on geographical location, as well the type of fuel source their home uses. Here’s a breakdown of expected heat savings by fuel source:
- Natural gas users can expect a 5% lower bill, thanks to increases in production
- Electrical users will save slightly; 2% less than last year
- Heating oil uses can expect a 15% savings, thanks to higher oil production
- Propane users can expect a 34% lower bill than last year
While the south may still have a cooler than average winter, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association has predicted that this winter will at least be warmer than last year, an estimated 12% warmer if you’re into percentages.
How Else Can I Lower Heat Costs?
There are always ways to reduce your heating costs, regardless of what the winter weather decides to do. Here are four ways your Gagne heat technicians suggest to lower your heating costs this winter:
1) Fix and Find Leaky Air Ducts: Your furnace or heat pump uses ductwork to get heated air to your home. It can loose a lot of that air to leaky ductwork or ductwork that’s not insulated, up to 20%. If your ductwork is accessible, sealing leaks and insulating ducts can be a fun do-it-yourself project that can improve your heat’s energy efficiency. Or, Gagne heating technicians can do it for you!
2) Have Furnace Maintenance Performed: Lots of people assume that their furnace can run forever and only needs a service call when there’s a breakdown. But routine maintenance on your furnace can not only help prevent potential breakdowns during the heating season, but it can also improve your furnace’s efficiency.
3) Consider Home Energy Upgrades: Home energy upgrades can help the heat your paying to generate stay in your home, instead of dissipating to the outdoors. Some energy upgrades can be as simple as adding thermal-backed curtains to your window treatments. Others can include adding attic insulation or caulking around windows.
4) Purchase Energy Star When Replacing : When your furnace or heat pump needs replacing, purchasing an Energy Star upgrade can help your heating costs stay low, regardless of what fuel prices or electric rates do in the future.
When it comes to staying warm in the Alpharetta, Buckhead, Chamblee, Norcross and surrounding areas, expert Gagne Heating and Cooling is here to help. Contact us today for furnace and heat pump repairs, service, sales and installation.