Tips for Cutting Heating Costs in Your Apartment This Winter
Sure, it’s important that you keep warm and toasty in your apartment home this winter. It’s also important that you don’t break the bank paying high heating bills to stay comfortable, too! It isn’t always easy to find a good balance between heating needs and heating costs, especially with utilities in apartments becoming more expensive as rates increase over time. However, there are a few things you can do to keep as much of your hard-earned cash in your pocket without having to watch TV in a hat, gloves, and scarf:
- One of the most effective tricks to put up your sleeve to minimize your heating bill is to focus on zone heating; that is, only heat the rooms that are in use at any given time. For example, if you work from home or are spending the day on the computer in your room, turn the heat way down and bring an efficient portable heater in the room with you. (Close your door to keep that heat in near you.) You can save even more money if you purchase a heater that shuts off automatically when a room reaches a certain temperature.
- One of the most common mistakes people make in an effort to save money is to turn the heat completely off when they aren’t at home. It stands to reason and seems to make sense that no heat is cheaper than even a little heat. However, your thermostat will ensure that your furnace makes up for the time off, and then some, in order to warm your home to a comfy temp after freezing all day. It takes much more energy to heat a home from 50 to 68, for example, than it does to heat an apartment from 60 to 68 degrees. Keep the thermostat on low, about 60 degrees when you aren’t home, but not off.
- As an apartment dweller, chances are going to be fairly good that you aren’t able to make too many home improvements; however, that doesn’t mean you can’t take advantage of some low-cost DIY weatherization. Special window shrink wrap is cheap, easy to install, and leaves no marks on windows, walls, or trim. You’d probably be shocked at how much cold air is blocked by having the plastic up, too. You can use draft stoppers that simply sit at the bottom of your doors to block drafts, too – these can be pretty plain-looking or oftentimes, you can find them as cute little animals and such.
- During the winter, to minimize the bill for heating in apartments, many people bake and cook meals at home more often to add some heat from the stove and oven, as opposed to going out or ordering take-out. This is just as effective for apartment temperature control as not using the oven during the hot summer months is. As a bonus, of course, you’ll save some cash by not ordering that expensive carry-out food.
- Another excellent switch that many apartment dwellers make is the switch from mini blinds or sheer curtains to quilted or insulated curtains in the winter. These curtains can be found easily in stores and online, and are available in many different sizes, colors, and designs. They can slip right over your existing curtain rod or if you don’t have a rod, one can be installed in about 10 minutes. Many renters prefer to use the tension rods (which are much like shower curtain rods) in windows to avoid damage to walls and frames.
While these represent only a handful of ways you can keep more warm air in and cold air out of your apartment this winter season, there are many other ways that are effective in reducing bills for heating in apartments, too. A final thing you can do to reduce your heating bills is to make sure the furnace filter is changed regularly, and should you notice anything out of the ordinary with your furnace, doors, windows, or any other appliance, be sure to put in a work order to your maintenance team right away for repairs.