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How to reduce your heating bill during winter

Last modified: 2022-12-05 | Approximate reading time 5 mins

Amanda Harvey

The onset of cold brings with it the anticipation of a high heating bill to keep everyone inside your home warm and comfortable. To avoid this situation and limit the cost of your heating bill, it’s essential to think of effective ways to reduce this bill.

11 tips to reduce your heating bill in winter

1- Caulk your windows

fenêtre en hiver_Comment réduire votre facture de chauffage en hiver_Soumission Rénovation

It’s well known that cracked or poorly sealed windows are a source of cold infiltration. So be sure to inspect them to identify any issue of this kind. Note that the majority of leaks occur between the window frame and the casement. Without too much of a delay, replace the caulking on your windows before the onset of the first snowfall.

Are you thinking about changing your windows? Note that double or triple glazed ENERGY STAR certified windows offer an efficiency that’s 20 to 40% higher than that of traditional windows.

2- Block all air outlets to the outside

Do your windows and doors no longer let in the slightest draft? Remember to insulate outlets, as well as spaces where cables or pipes pass. As for the doors, install weatherstripping under each one.

3- Don't constantly open the doors

If you heat the inside of your home with a fireplace, opening the doors can be an interesting way to heat the upper floor without overusing your radiators. In general, it’s best to avoid doing this if you’re using electric heating. Keeping doors closed in such a circumstance will ensure that each room is heated as needed and doesn’t unnecessarily dissipate heat in other rooms.

4- Maintain heating systems

paysage hivernal_Comment réduire votre facture de chauffage en hiver_Soumission Rénovation

The maintenance of your heating systems is absolutely essential to avoid any performance loss. The recommendations to follow obviously vary depending on the type of heating used:

  • For chimneys: sweeping is essential once or twice per winter to ensure their optimal function;
  • For the furnace: replace the filters as often as suggested;
  • For boilers: they need annual maintenance, otherwise, you’ll use around 10% more energy. Regarding the boilers, take note that they must be changed every 15 years and that they should never be used at a temperature above 50 degrees;
  • For electric heaters: on a regular basis, be sure to dust your heaters and clean them completely once a year;
  • For gas boilers: call in a professional for maintenance at least once a year;
  • For a hot air system: its annual maintenance is essential to ensure its full performance.

As an additional recommendation to ensure the best possible operation of your radiators, never cover them or put anything over them. Second, don’t place furniture in front of them, as this will interfere with air circulation. As a result, the heat will not be redistributed evenly.

5- Avoid overheating your home

So what’s the ideal temperature inside the house? To enjoy a comfortable indoor temperature without having too high a heating bill, it’s recommended to maintain a temperature of 17 degrees in the bedrooms and a temperature of 19 degrees in the central rooms such as the kitchen, dining room, and kitchen. Remember that for each additional degree of heat, your bill will increase by approximately 7%.

Are you going away? The idea of ​​finding a way to avoid heating the house while you’re away shouldn't lead you to turn off the heat completely. This would risk freezing the pipes, which would be rather counterproductive. So keep the indoor temperature at around 16 degrees to avoid this situation. 

6- Program your heating

Since it makes sense that you want to enjoy a warmer room temperature when you’re inside, program the heating so that it’s higher during the hours you’re present and lower during the hours you’re absent. Regarding the drop in heating, it should not exceed 3 degrees. By taking this simple measure, you can lower your bill by at least 4%. Rather interesting, no?

7- Go for an electronic thermostat

thermostat électrique_Comment réduire votre facture de chauffage en hiver_Soumission Rénovation

Do you have bimetallic thermostats? Switching them to electronic thermostats will reduce your heating bill by at least 5%. If for various reasons you’re not interested in changing them all, hire an electrician to replace at least the ones in rooms where heat is necessary. The intensity of your new thermostats should be selected according to your baseboard’s power.

By choosing programmable electronic models, you can also have better control over temperature variations, reducing the possibility of overheating the interior of your home. Ideally, thermostats should be independent so that they’re not located too close to heat sources.

8- Set your water heater to 55 degrees

By lowering the temperature of your water heater, you’ll save on your heating bill, while preventing your appliance from clogging up prematurely. That sounds worth it, right?

Do you have a problem with your water heater? Read our article on the solutions available for you to remedy this.

9- Stop your water heater in the case of prolonged absence

If you’re leaving your home for a few days (at least four or five days), it’s beneficial to turn off your water heater. However, avoid drinking lukewarm water when you get home, and make sure to turn it back on!

10- Get thick curtains and close them at night

During the cold season, having thick curtains offers the advantage of blocking cold that may find its way into your home from your window sills (if your caulking isn’t redone). Therefore, keeping them closed overnight will prevent a drop in temperature from occurring and unnecessarily cooling your home’s interior. Obviously, having them open during the day will allow you to take advantage of the heat of the sun.

On the other hand, a small precaution is in order for curtains near a heat source. If your curtains are directly above your radiators, make sure they’re short enough to avoid falling on top of them.

11- Have the ventilation ducts cleaned

As the ventilation ducts have a great influence on the performance of your heating and air conditioning equipment, they should be cleaned every three years. This will help to limit heat loss caused by the accumulation of dirt inside the pipes. In addition, this cleaning will help improve the quality of the air breathed in by your home’s occupants by also eliminating bacteria, mold and germs.

Tips for reducing your heating bill The specifics
1) Window caulking
  • Opt ideally for double or triple glazed certified ENERGY STAR windows
2) Seal all air outlets
  • This includes doors, electric outlets and areas where wires and conduits pass
3) Keep doors closed (unless you have a fireplace)
  • This will prevent heat dispersion
4) Maintain heating equipment
  • Have your devices serviced and change the filters as needed 
5) Avoid overheating your home
  • Maintain a temperature of 17 degrees in bedrooms and 19 degrees in central rooms 
6) Program your heating system
  • Reduce the temperature by 3 degrees maximum when you're not home (though never below 16 degrees) 
7) Opt for electronic thermostats
  • Prioritize the replacement of thermostats in rooms that require the most heating
8) Set your water heater to 55 degrees
  • You will save in addition to limiting the clogging of your water heater 
9) In the case of absence, stop your water heater
  • This measure applies if you are leaving for at least 4 or 5 days
  • Avoid consuming lukewarm water on your return
10) Install thick curtains
  • Close them at night, they will block the cold that emanates from the windows 
11) Have your ventilation ducts cleaned
  • Cleaning should be done every 3 years


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