Wednesday, February 4, 2015

How to lower your gas bills in your home

How to lower your gas bills

This is a question that I get asked a lot from all kinds of different people; this is obviously a concern for people with small houses, big houses, old houses and newer houses. Everyone is looking for some way to save themselves money as their gas bills continue to go up but their wages do not.

Here are some tips to save you on your gas bill;

Change your gas hot water tank to a tank less “flash boiler”. This is basically on demand hot water; instead of your hot water tank endlessly warming water all day long an on demand system flash boils water when you turn the tap on. This uses the minimum amount of gas to heat your domestic hot water.

Upgrade your gas furnace to a high efficiency gas furnace with multiple stage fans.

Install a state of the art electric heat pump. This will save you on gas in the winter and electricity in the summer. New air to air heat pumps run on electricity but are more efficient then high efficiency gas furnaces.

Re-insulate your home. The better the insulation in your home the less heat it will require to keep it warm in the winter.

Change your windows. Newer windows have better r-values and have options like solar gain/solar limiting which helps balance the home allowing the heating system to work less.

Install a programmable thermostat. This will allow you to lower the temperature in your home when you are not there and raise it in the times that you are home to enjoy it.

Remove grass or plants from the in-takes and exhaust of the furnace. This also goes for snow; the lack of air flow can be hard on a furnace making it burn more gas to create the same amount of heat.

Install an HRV system. This will help re-use some of the heated air in the home allowing your furnace to run more efficiently.

Install a wood stove. Wood is a cheap source of heat, if you do most of the work yourself (chopping , stacking and splitting). It also allows you to warm up the room that you are sitting in, allowing the rest of the home to be kept at a colder temperature as most people like their bedrooms at a colder temperature for sleeping.

Install ceiling fans. This is a great way to re-circulate the warm air that gets trapped up at the ceiling of your home.

Install low voltage electric dampers in your duct system. This will allow you to have multiple thermostats in your home; every room with a thermostat can then be set at a different temperature. The unused parts (rooms) of your home are then able to be kept at a lower level.

Buy new energy star appliances. New stoves and ovens that are run on gas use less gas then their older counter parts. This will pay for itself over the lifetime of the applaince.

Everything that I have mentioned will save you money on your gas bill. Some of these idea’s are more expensive than others, you should do the numbers as to how much you will save compared to how much it will cost you to make the changes. If you can’t afford the upgrade then borrowing a lot of money will probably defeat the purpose of doing it. Make sure you understand the cost compared to the savings before doing any of the above mentioned things to your home.

Rob Abbott
Village Builders Inc.

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