The ringing in of a New Year brings the resolution to do better. It’s the perfect time to examine your home and see where small changes or tweaks can help you save money on heating costs.

Here are a few tips for 2019 that can bring new savings on your monthly heating bill.

(1) Use a Programmable Thermostat.  Why pay to heat your home when no one’s there?  If your house is empty during the day, program your thermostat to a lower temperature.  Schedule the heat to kick back on or turn up an hour or so before you return home.  Your home will be toasty when you get back, without having the heat run all day in an empty house.

(2) Replace Your Furnace Filter.  The dirtier the filter on your furnace, the harder the furnace has to work to blow the warm air out.  One inch thick filters should be changed monthly, and thicker filters should be changed twice a year.  A clean filter eases the workload on your furnace (and air conditioning unit), which in turn, lowers your bill.

(3) Seal leaks on windows and doors.  Leaks and cracks are among the biggest culprits of drafty homes, particularly if your windows are older.  Caulking the windows or using a window insulation kit can lead to significant savings on your heating bill.  Changing the weather stripping on your doors can also prevent drafts.

(4) Turn down the heat at night.  You may already do this to sleep comfortably, but turning the heat down to 60 degrees will lower heating costs.  Most likely, you will not even notice.  And if you have a programmable thermostat, you can set the heat to start warming up your house again before you wake up.

(5) Reverse the ceiling fan.  Ceiling fans run counter-clockwise in the summer to push cold air down from the ceiling, cooling the room.  If you set your fan to run clockwise instead, it will draw the cold air up to the ceiling, pushing the warm air back down, essentially warming the room.  Make sure, however, to keep the fan on low.  Otherwise, the cold air will blow against the ceiling and back down into the room.

Using these few simple tips can help save a considerable amount on your monthly heating bill, while still keeping your home warm and comfortable through the winter months.