Heating costs are going up this winter – this will save you money

(NEXSTAR) — Americans busy removing leaves from gutters and protecting their pipes may want to add one more task before winter comes — prepare for a spike in heating bills.

On Tuesday, the Energy Information Administration (EIA), a statistics agency under the Department of Energy, said the price of natural gas for residential and commercial use will hit a multi-year high in 2022, with the price rising to about double the 2021 cost in a few months.

“It seems quite certain that we will continue to see relatively high natural gas prices in the US,” Harrison Fell, senior research scientist at Columbia University’s Center on Global Energy Policy, told The Hill. “We will see higher bills for many customers in the US”

In September, a study by the National Energy Assistance Directors’ Association found that heating bills are expected to rise an average of 17.2% from last winter, the second straight year of larger cost increases.

Mark Wolfe, chief executive of the nonprofit energy organization, said in a recent interview with CBS that a very hot summer was partly to blame, as natural gas is used to generate the electricity we rely on to cool our homes. A further aggravation of the market is the war in Ukraine and subsequent US exports to European countries scrambling to replace Russian gas.

“For people who use heating oil, this is set globally, and oil prices have risen across the board,” Wolfe said. “Now they’re down a bit… but they’re still higher than last year. So the impact is very significant, there is a lot of pain.”

Wolfe said that low- and middle-income families — or about half of the US — are suffering as inflation and historically high gas prices drive up the cost of basic goods.

Tips to reduce your heating bills

When it comes to cutting heating bills, there are several ways to reduce the bill.

Wolfe recommends adjusting your heating and cooling system now, before the companies get busy, think of all the possible ways you can keep the thermostat down, use caulk or some other sealant to stop any air leaks in the house, and apply Check with your local energy supplier for any incentive programs to improve the energy efficiency of your home.

The Department of Energy recommends a “whole house system” that treats the home as an interdependent energy system – insulation, airtightness, efficient appliances and other elements help reduce costs and increase comfort. You should check with your local government as you may be able to claim subsidies.

If redesigning your home heating and cooling system isn’t an option, Energy.gov has several other recommendations:

  • Keep your thermostat as low as you are comfortable and even lower when you are sleeping or leaving the house
  • Clean/replace oven air filter as recommended
  • If necessary, clean hot air registers, baseboard heaters and radiators and make sure they are not clogged
  • Eliminate trapped air from hot water radiators once or twice a season; If you are not sure how to perform this task, consult a professional.
  • Install heat-resistant radiator reflectors between the outside walls and the radiators.
  • Turn off kitchen, bathroom and other exhaust fans within 20 minutes after you finish cooking or bathing; When replacing exhaust fans, consider installing high-efficiency, low-noise models.
  • During the winter, leave the curtains and blinds on your south-facing windows open during the day to allow sunlight to enter your home, and closed at night to reduce the chill you may feel from cold windows.

https://www.woodtv.com/news/nexstar-media-wire/heating-costs-expected-to-soar-this-winter-save-money-by-doing-these-things%EF%BF%BC/ Heating costs are going up this winter – this will save you money

Dais Johnston

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