Opening your energy bill and seeing a surprisingly high number is an unpleasant experience. While spending more on heating is common in the winter, it could also indicate a few problems. From malfunctions that require furnace repair to drafty windows, here are a few common culprits behind excessive energy consumption.

How to Lower Your Energy Bills

1. Drafty Windows

Single-pane windows allow cold air to enter your home and treated air to escape through the glass. Gaps in the caulking or weatherstripping can also create air leaks.

If possible, switch single-pane windows for double-pane options. The air trapped between the two glass sheets will help insulate your home. Also, if you spot gaps in the weatherstripping or caulk, add new material to seal the openings. Avoid running the heater with any windows open.

2. Old or Malfunctioning Furnace

furnace repairIf you skip regular heating system maintenance, your furnace will be inefficient and work overtime. The excess strain may eventually lead to breakdowns that require furnace repair.

Try changing your air filter first. If you don’t notice a reduction in energy use, call an HVAC contractor to inspect the system and determine if it needs replacing. Also, install a programmable thermostat to automatically lower the temperature when you’re sleeping under the covers or away at work.

3. Poor Insulation

Your furnace may be working overtime because your home’s insulation is insufficient or damaged. Pests like mice can chew through insulation, making holes that allow indoor heat to seep outside. Insulation also naturally degrades over time.

Have a contractor inspect your walls and attic. Heat rises, so if the attic’s insulation is poor, treated air escapes more easily. Replace or replenish old and degraded materials to keep your home at a more stable temperature without straining the furnace.


For help with your HVAC system, contact Oehl Plumbing, Heating, Electric & Air Conditioning, Inc. Serving Coralville, North Liberty, and Iowa City, IA, these technicians are licensed, bonded, and insured, so your home is in safe hands. They provide everything from furnace repair to plumbing work to keep your family comfortable year-round. Call (319) 622-3636 to schedule an appointment, or learn more about their heater services on their website