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Lower Your Winter Heating Costs

Cooler temps outside may have you raising the thermostat inside, but these tips will help you lower your winter heating costs.

  • Home heating makes up more than half of a typical customer’s monthly gas bill. Lowering the thermostat three to five degrees (and in temperate climates turning it off when not at home) may help save up to 30% on winter heating costs.
  • Check your furnace filters every month during the heating season and clean or replace the filter when necessary. When installing a new or cleaned filter, be sure to re-install the front panel door of the furnace properly so it fits snugly.
  • Never operate the furnace without the front-panel door properly in place because doing so may create the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning.
  • Don’t block heating outlets or return registers with furniture or other objects.
  • Repair cracks or broken seams in forced-air heating ducts.
  • Install or upgrade your attic insulation
  • CaLower Winter Heating Costs - Seal air leaks around windowsulk and weather-strip drafty windows and doors. If the weather is already too cold for this, try to catch a mild day and take care of this task. You’ll be amazed at what you can save on your winter heating costs by replacing old caulk and adding weather-stripping to windows and doors.
  • Open your drapes or blinds during the day and let the sun help warm the home. Close your drapes or blinds at night to keep the warmth inside.
  • Consider adding another blanket or two at night to stay warm instead of cranking up the heat to stay warm. It’s much more cost effective to add a blanket than it is to turn up the thermostat.
  • Choose a higher efficiency model when shopping for a new furnace or heat pump.

If your present heating system is over 10 years old, it may be time to consider replacing the old unit with a high efficiency one. Today’s heating and cooling equipment is often 50 to 75 percent more efficient than a 10 year old unit. Call Brown and Reaves Services today for an estimate on replacing your current heating unit. 843-497-9867.

And don’t forget to Like us on Facebook and grab your 20% off coupon on our next service call.

Minimize Heating Costs This Holiday Season

Minimize your heating costs this holiday seasonWith the holiday season just around the corner, it’s time to start thinking about ways to minimize heating costs, while at the same time, enjoying your holidays in comfort.

There are steps you can take to reduce cold-weather expenses of a warm house. These simple tips can help you minimize heating costs without causing a lot of discomfort. Your wallet will thank you later.

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Ways to Minimize Heating Costs

Change Air Filters

It’s easy to forget this simple task, but it can make a big difference for the household budget. Dirty filters add to heating costs and filters should be checked at least once a month.

Weather Stripping

Outside air pours in around poorly insulated windows and doors. Proper weather stripping keeps the cold air out and the heat in and therefore minimize your heating costs.

Try this simple test: Light a candle and hold it near windows and doors to see if the flame flickers or the smoke moves in a horizontal direction. If it moves, you need to seal the area with weather stripping or add some sort of insulating material.

Here’s an idea to stop drafts under doors.

Check Water Heater

Long, hot showers add dollars to your monthly heating costs. The U.S. Department of Energy says that each 10-degree reduction in water temperature saves between 3 and 5 percent in annual energy costs. The DOE recommends a temperature of 120 degrees and adds that this temperature slows mineral buildup and corrosion in the water heater and pipes. This also saves you in the long run by reducing service calls to repair or replace your water heater.

Bright Light

Sunshine is a natural mood enhancer, but it can also help with energy costs. At night, close blinds, shades and drapes to reduce heat loss. On sunny days, on the southern side of your home, open everything up and let Mother Nature help with heating costs.

Check Air Ducts

Even brand-new homes have duct leakage. In fact, the average home loses 20 to 30 percent of its heat through the ducts. Having someone assess your ducts and remedy any leakages can greatly decrease the amount written on the check for your heating costs each month.

Check Heating Unit

If heating costs seem unusually high, clear any debris off the exterior unit and check for fluid around the unit. Fluid may indicate blockage of the condensation drain and pan.

Turn Off Vent Fan

In the winter, bath and kitchen vents should be used minimally. These vents push inside air and moisture outside, letting heat escape. A small oscillating fan or ceiling fan in your bathroom and kitchen to move the moist air is a better choice than turning on that vent and letting your room heat escape along with the moisture. Since homes are much drier during heating season, some moisture in your bath and kitchen is not a bad thing to offset the dryness you may feel from the heat running.

 

Call us today before you turn up the heat. We may be able to offer you other ways to save on heating costs without draining your checkbook to pay your electric bill. Brown and Reaves Services, Inc., 843-497-9867. Don’t forget to LIKE US on Facebook and grab your 20% off discount coupon on your next service call.

Winterize Your Myrtle Beach Home – Save on Heating Costs

Tips to Winterize Your HomeWith temperatures falling and meteorologists predicting a colder than normal winter, the easiest and most cost efficient way to keep your home’s heat inside, while keeping your heating bill respectable, is to add fresh insulation to your attic, ceilings, basement, and walls.  Mark Wolf (of the National Energy Assistance Directors’ Association) states that these do-it-yourself home upgrades could cause instant energy savings between 10 and 20%.

Here is a list of four cheap and easy tweaks to seal up and insulate your home that will surely lower your heating bill this winter.

  • Update Your Thermostat– Cost $80, Yearly savings $200+According to Consumer Reports, a memory management thermostat unit can cut 20% from your heating and cooling bill. You can program the thermostat unit to save heat while you sleep and wake up to a warm and toasty home in the morning by upgrading to a programmable thermostat.

 

  • Weatherize your Doors and Windows– Cost $100, Yearly savings $200+This is an important, yet easy step to insulating your home. First, apply water-based acrylic caulk to seal small leaks around doors and windows.  Second apply weather stripping to your doorframes to seal air leaks around movable joints. Last, apply shrink film to old windows, single-pane windows, or unused openings (like a small pet door) to keep cold air out and warm air inside.

 

  • Insulate Water Heater (Pipes)– Cost $30, Yearly savings $200Exposed hot water pipes can lower water temperature at the tap by as many as four degrees. Insulating these exposed pipes on your water heater with fiberglass or foam sleeves costs less than $30 in most cases and can save you five times that amount yearly (via heating bill).  An insulating blanket for the tank of your water heater costs $20  but will save you nearly 9% on your heating bill.

 

  • Cover Wall Openings– Cost $50, Yearly savings $150Spray insulating foam sealant around the holes for outdoor faucets, wiring, and outlets. Nearly 15% of air leakage manifests at wall openings.  Foam sealant will keep the cold air from entering through these small openings.

Inflation is elevating the cost of living in many facets of life, but a lower heating and cooling bill can be obtained through the methods listed above.  Insulate your home properly and beat the winter chill with lower heating bills.

Federal energy tax credits were eliminated on December 31st of last year, meaning, home improvements on insulation can no longer qualify for the $1,500 tax credit.

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