High heating bills got you down this winter? We get it. Heating a house throughout a Wisconsin winter can be ridiculously expensive, especially if you live in an older home. Luckily, there are several things you can do to reduce your monthly heating bills while maintaining a warm and cozy living space. Read on for our top four ways to heat your home for less this winter.

1. Use a Humidifier

Humid air tends to feel warmer than dry air, and unfortunately, running your furnace constantly can really dry out the air inside your home. It’s a catch-22 of the worst kind for us Wisconsinites who are trying to avoid high heating costs. Luckily a humidifier can help.

By adding moisture to the air inside your home, a humidifier will help your house retain more heat than it would with only the furnace running. You can opt to use several smaller units placed in various rooms throughout your house, or, you can take the efficient route and opt for a permanent, whole-home humidifier.

If you opt for a permanent unit, whole-house humidity control can also help you cool your home more efficiently throughout summer.

2. Adjust Ductwork Dampers

Some types of ductwork have dampers that are designed to adjust airflow through the duct network based on the season. If your ducts have these dampers and you haven’t been using them properly, that may be a primary reason behind your pricey heating bills.

How can you tell whether your ducts have dampers? They’re typically located on or near the main supply trunk, so check there first. Keep an eye out for a handle (or handles) that have settings for summer and winter.

Adjust the damper to the appropriate season by setting the handle parallel to the duct line. This setting will maximize the flow of warm air through the ductwork, which will help heat your home more evenly and efficiently.

3. Change HVAC Filters Regularly

Not great about changing your furnace filter regularly? That’s likely a primary culprit behind your high heating bills. To help your furnace function as efficiently as possible — and bring your heating bills into a more reasonable range — be sure to swap out your HVAC filter every 60–90 days.

Since you likely spend more time indoors throughout winter, it’s also a good idea to check on your filter(s) once a month, just to see if they’re dirty. If they’re filthy at the 30-day mark, don’t wait to swap them out. 

4. Implement Duct Booster Fans

Do you have a forced-air heating system? If so, there are several types of duct booster fans that are designed to increase the flow of warm air into rooms that tend to stay on the cooler side. If you implement these fans, you can also use them during summer to improve the flow of cool air into rooms that tend to heat up more than the rest of your home.

These fans sit just inside the outlet end of a duct and feature a pressure switch that monitors air pressure from your furnace or air conditioner. When your system’s blower turns on, the duct booster turns on almost simultaneously.

Some booster fans simply plug into the nearest wall outlet while others must be hard-wired into your HVAC system. Since cheaper, plug-in models tend to be noisy, it’s in your best interest to hire a heating and cooling professional to install a high-quality model for you. 

Use the Reverse Setting on Ceiling Fans

Running your ceiling fans on their lowest setting can help distribute warm air throughout your house, but only if you use the reverse setting. Using the normal setting will funnel air upward, toward the fan, which may end up cooling the air in your home rather than simply distributing it.

Since warm air naturally rises toward your ceilings, setting your fans to the reverse setting will allow them to pull that warm air downward, closer to standing height. Be sure to only use the fans on their lowest setting as allowing them to spin too fast will inevitably reduce the air temperature in the room.

Contact Steve’s for All Your Heating and Cooling Needs

Looking for a reliable heating and cooling company in central Wisconsin? Look no further than our team at Steve’s Plumbing & Heating! We serve customers throughout Wisconsin Rapids, Stevens Point, Marshfield, Wausau, and the surrounding areas. To learn more about how we can help you, feel free to call us today at 715-421-1800 or request an estimate, and we’ll be in touch with additional information.