Myth Busters: Heating Edition

Even though we all heat our homes during the winter, there is still a fair amount of misleading information about how to keep your family cozy in the most efficient way. Let’s bust a couple of these heating myths!

Myth #1: Floors and walls are always cold during the winter

This may be true in some cases, but floors and walls should generally remain moderately warm. If they aren’t, we recommend checking for leaks around windows, doors and ductwork. There may also be an issue with already installed insulation.

Myth #2: Ceiling fans don’t make sense during the winter

Ceiling fans don’t change the room temperature per se; the air produces a cold sensation on your skin. Spinning a ceiling fan in a clockwise direction during the winter has the benefit of bringing down warmer air that has risen to the ceiling. This may even allow you to decrease the heat a bit.

Myth #3: Closing heating vents in unoccupied rooms saves money

Furnaces balance the temperature throughout your home, so excluding a room from the system will create an imbalance. This imbalance will trigger the heater to work harder and spend more money. Thermostats in different rooms can still be set to different temperatures, but we recommend keeping the difference to 3 degrees. If your doors aren’t insulated well, warm air will also find a way to get into the unoccupied room, which again cools down the occupied room. That may tempt you to increase the heat. Leaving vents open may not only save you money, but a lot of worrying.

Myth #4: Water pipes will freeze if I turn off the heat

This myth is related to the ones above. Yes, water pipes can freeze, so we need to take action.  Heat tape only uses 3-watt per linear foot, limits the use of heat and decreases the energy bill. Depending on the insulation of your home and the outside temperatures, you may want to turn off the water at the meter but leave faucets open. This makes sense when you’re on vacation or visiting relatives during the holidays.

Always feel free to ask us about any myths you have heard. We’d be more than happy to address them in one of our next blogs!