When is it finally time to turn the heat on in your home? As temperatures drop in the fall, plenty of families are reluctant to turn on the heat, even when they really should. It’s just too early to turn on the heat, they think. Imagine how expensive it will be if they start blasting the furnace now! Heating in the fall isn’t actually that expensive compared to the depths of winter, when the furnace has a lot more work to do to keep your home comfortable. And there’s no denying that no one likes waking up to a frigid house in October.
Many families wait until the last weekend of October to finally turn on the heat, but it all depends on your climate and how much you worry about your energy bills. With snow falling in parts of North America already, you can bet no one there is worried about cranking up the heat.
But if you insist that it’s still too early to turn on the heat, there may be some things you can do before you head to the thermostat, and some common mistakes you should make sure you avoid.
First of all, don’t set the thermostat too high right away. Setting your thermostat over-high to heat your house sooner doesn’t work. Instead, you will simply wind up sweating and wasting a lot of energy and money. Particularly in the fall, you should try setting your thermostat to a temperature that’s even a bit cooler than you might like. Often, the cold you feel in the fall is because your body is in shock after the warm summer. Remember how quickly the t-shirts come out when it’s this same temperature in the spring?
Next, you should go draft hunting. Drafts are commonly found around windows and doors and sealing these can keep your home a lot cozier all winter long. Heat will escape into the great outdoors while you pay an arm and a leg to keep your kids from complaining about the cold. Take the time now to apply weather stripping to your windows, install heavier curtains, and block winter breezes. You can also keep a draft-free home cooler, as it will feel more comfortable.
Before you turned your furnace on this year, you probably forgot all about it. The earlier you get your furnace checked out and any wear and tear repaired, the better. There are some DIY things you can do like vacuuming out the blower and changing the filter, but you should hire the experts for furnace repairs like replacing motor belts, fixing gas supply lines, or fixing a finicky pilot light.
Pushing your furnace beyond its capacity is also a big mistake to make. If your thermostat simply won’t go up to the temperature you want it to be, don’t push the temperature even higher to make up the difference. Either your thermostat is broken and needs to be mixed or your furnace is struggling to keep up the heat. You could be losing heat somewhere or your furnace could need repairs or replacement. Don’t wait until it stops working altogether. Call in a professional now.