8 Tips to Save Money on Heating Your Home

Person aiming remote control toward ductless mini-split air conditioner installed on a wall just below the ceiling.
Heating your home can be affordable and environmentally green. [Maksym Kravtsov/iStockPhotos/Getty Images]

The 2020 Farmers’ Almanac predicts “yet another freezing, frigid, and frosty winter for two-thirds of the country.”

The good news is homeowners don’t have to choose between staying cozy and eco-conscious. Today’s innovations make it easy to enjoy both with smart home climate control technologies and advanced heating systems created to achieve maximum energy efficiency and comfort. 

As you consider ways to live green this winter, you may be surprised to learn that home heating uses more energy and costs more money than any other system in your home — typically making up nearly half of your utility bill. 

It’s no won­der optimal energy efficiency is a homebuyer’s top “green preference,” with nearly half of homebuyers willing to invest between $1,000 and $9,999 for a $1,000 annual savings on their utility bills, and 37 percent are willing to spend upward of $10,000, according to the National Association of Home Builders 2019 “What Home Buyers Really Want” Report.

So, how do you choose a home heating solution that is both earth and financially friendly? Here are some tips to guide your journey.  

American Standard Heating and Air Conditioning technician installs a smart thermostat
Smart thermostats are energy-efficient solutions for heating homes.

1. Get ‘Smart’ About Home Climate Control

When it comes to smart home tem­perature control, there are smart HVAC systems and smart thermostats.

Smart HVAC systems have built-in internet capability and can be controlled directly without additional equipment.

Smart home thermostats create “smart” sys­tems by enabling remote temperature control via a mobile or internet-con­nected device or voice-operated home automation system

Ductless mini-split air conditioner with remote control
A ductless mini-split system is an economical way to heat or cool just one room.

2. Upgrade Your System or Thermostat

Consider upgrading your system and install­ing a smart home thermostat that can sig­nificantly reduce your utility expense.

Among the most energy-efficient heating and cooling products on the market, ductless mini-split systems can save as much as 25 percent on your energy bill.

Further, an efficiently controlled thermostat could save an additional 10 percent a year by simply turning your thermostat back 7°-10°F for eight hours a day from its normal setting. 

Set the thermostat to 68°F while you’re awake and set it lower while you’re asleep or away from home.

Digital assistants Google Home and Amazon Echo, sitting side by side
Many heating and cooling systems work with digital assistants such as Google Home and Amazon Echo. (DepositPhotos)

3. Voice Your Preferences

Take control of your comfort. Most HVAC manufacturers offer apps that enable systems to be controlled from anywhere using a mobile device.

Now, voice-control capability uses digital assistants, like Amazon Alexa or Google Home, to ver­bally dictate home temperatures. 

Being able to easily control the temperature more closely allows homeowners to be more comfortable and improve energy savings.

Heating and cooling technician works on a condenser unit outside a home
If you don’t use certain rooms, ask a heating and cooling technician about zoned air conditioning.

4. Find the Efficient Comfort Zone

Many of us live in homes designed for bigger families but have yet to downsize. 

If you find yourself using a fraction of your home on a regular basis, consider upgrading to a zoned ducted, or ductless system. This will allow you to save energy heating and cooling spaces where your family doesn’t spend a lot of time. 

This will multiply savings as you’re not only needing less heat (and cool air) but you also gain from a more efficient system in the spaces you do still use.

Bay window with curtains open and a landscape view
Open your curtains at sunrise to take advantage of solar gain. (DepositPhotos)

5. Capture the Sun

Even if you don’t have solar panels, you can still take advantage of the sun’s energy to heat your home. Open your south-facing curtains at sunrise to make the best use of passive solar gain.

This works particularly well if your home has stone or concrete floors, as they have a large thermal mass, meaning they soak up a lot of heat and release it slowly.

Remember to close your curtains as soon as the sun dips to trap all that free heat.

Computer with speakers on each side sitting on a desk in front of white brick walls.
Look for unexpected heat sources, such as your computer. (DepositPhotos)

6. Use Waste Heat

Some equipment in your home generates “waste heat” during normal operation. For example, your computer belts out waste heat that’s dispersed with the aid of cooling fins and a fan.

Position your workstation where you can best use that thermal energy to help warm your room, for a free heating system.

Padding ceiling fan for cooling a home during the summertime
Ceiling fans don’t just help make a room cooler; they also can help heat a room. (DepositPhotos)

7. Force Down Warm Air

Denser, cooler air stays closer to the ground, and warmer air rises. So, force that warm air downward with a low-speed fan.  

Reverse the fan’s setting so it sends the warm air upward, as this will distribute it back down the walls to mix with the rest of the air in the room, gradually raising the ambient temperature.

Hand on top of stone wool insulation
Most homes are under-insulated, so adding a layer of stone wool insulation in your attic can help trap extra heat. (Rockwool)

8. Lock it In

Insulate and fill the gaps. Warmed air leaking out around poorly sealed window frames, power sockets, recessed light fittings, and other gaps is a big source of heat loss in homes.

Use caulk, foam strips or expanding foam to seal up unwanted holes in your home. Add extra insulation to your home cheaply by layering up stone wool in your attic.

Thick curtains help to insulate glass at windows. If your windows are single-glazed, consider sticking transparent polythene film to your internal window frames to act as super-low-budget “double-glazing.”

As temperatures plummet this winter, the right climate control system will help you and your loved ones stay comfortable, lower utility bills and respect the envi­ronment.

Submitted by Andy Armstrong

Further Reading


  1. I heat my home with Kerosene and a Monitor heater. I live in a raised ranch and the heat comes up the stairs. Not the best solution but although I used to heat with wood I am too old for that and the same with pellets. I have looked around for an alternative way to heat but I have yet to find one. I live in NH and electricity is very expensive here. So how would a heat pump function for my location?

    • Hi, Alex!
      We recommend contacting American Standard Heating and Air Conditioning for product-specific questions.
      You can reach them at this number to find the heat pump or furnace that’s right for you: 1-833-564-3083
      Good luck. 🙂


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