No AC? No Problem!

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Air conditioning units have a bad habit of giving out at the least convenient moment possible. Maybe your unit crashed in the morning of what is forecasted to be the hottest day of the year, or perhaps it went out just as you were preparing to welcome company into your home. Either way, the natural reaction is to call for AC repair right away. Unfortunately, many air conditioning companies don’t place residential repairs particularly high on their priorities list, which means you could end up waiting a few hours or even a few days to get a fix.

Luckily, there is an option that doesn’t involve cooling your guests with portable fans or trying to get through a humid night with no relief but the breeze coming through wide-open windows. At Elite Comfort Home and Commercial Services, we offer emergency residential air conditioning services. If your air conditioning unit gives up the ghost and you need an urgent fix, all you need to do is call.

What We Do

We created Elite Comfort with the goal of providing our customers with the best experience they could find anywhere. We never wanted to be the company that was “too busy” to fit valued customers into the schedule. Instead, we wanted to be the company that homeowners could call at any time of day, any day of the year, and get the help or service they needed.

It was with those goals in mind that we devise our 24/7 service mentality. If your air conditioning unit crashes, call us. It doesn’t matter if it’s early morning, midday, or the middle of the night. It also doesn’t matter if it’s a Tuesday or a Saturday. Heck, it doesn’t even matter if your residential AC unit decides to give out on the Fourth of July! As we mentioned earlier, AC units love to crash at inopportune moments. The unique thing about Elite Comfort is that we don’t care about how convenient or inconvenient the time is: if you call us, we’ll be there. It’s as simple as that.

Moreover, we offer a 100% satisfaction guarantee on all the work we do—whether it happens during regular business hours or as an after-hours emergency call. No matter the issue you are facing and no matter when it strikes, you can count on Elite Comfort for an accurate diagnosis and an effective fix. We even have the rave reviews to show that our satisfaction pledge is more than just empty words.

Call Elite Comfort for an Emergency Service

Do you have an air conditioning emergency?

Whether you are dealing with an air conditioner that has broken down entirely or one that can’t seem to maintain a consistent, comfortable temperature, it’s worth a call. In the dead of summer, going without air conditioning for even an hour can be too much—let alone several days.

To get a quick repair, give us a call at Elite Comfort today. You can reach us 24 hours a day, seven days a week by dialing 832-309-3771.

The post No AC? No Problem! appeared first on Elite Comfort Home & Commercial Services.

From http://elitecomfortservices.com/no-ac-no-problem/

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What to Do with Your Unit Before, During, and After a Hurricane

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Hurricane season can be a nerve-wracking time for homeowners. You have an important responsibility to keep yourselves and your home as safe as possible during severe bouts of extreme weather. One thing you may worry about during an approaching hurricane is your air conditioner. Air conditioners are important and expensive to replace, so you’ll want to do as much as you can to make sure that yours is unaffected by the coming storm.

HurricaneThere are several things you can do before and after a hurricane to help care for your air conditioner. Those of you who remain in your home during a hurricane can also keep several simple rules in mind to keep both you and your systems at minimal risk. Below are some of our tips, as supported by FEMA guidelines. Refer to them often, and help make sure that your air conditioner is as safe as possible the next time a hurricane approaches.

Turn Your Unit Off (and Keep It That Way)

The most important thing to remember when preparing for a hurricane is that electronic devices should be powered down. Move portable electronic devices to places where water is less likely to reach them, and cords should be wrapped to keep them from dangling. If you have a central air conditioner, you won’t be able to move it. However, you can turn it off so that it will not become an electrical risk if water inundates your home.

Remove Window Air Conditioners

As stated above, portable electronic devices should be moved well out of the way of dangerous places. Take out your window air conditioners, so that they cannot become damaged by wind and rain. Moving your window air conditioners also keeps them from being able to come loose and fly through your living room or walls in high winds. However, you will have to make sure that you seal the resultant openings after you move them so that other debris cannot blow through your home.

Protect Outdoor Units

For split system ACs or heat pumps, the indoor unit isn’t the only thing you’ll have to consider. You should also take steps to protect your outdoor units with tarps or plywood, so that flying debris is less likely to damage them.

Once the Storm Hits

If you are still in your home during the storm, make sure that you do not turn on your air conditioner. In fact, your electricity should be turned off throughout your home if you decide to evacuate. After the storm has passed, be extremely careful not to turn on your power or use your air conditioner again without having a professional perform a diagnosis of your property and ensure that it is safe. Elite Comfort is currently offering free AC diagnostics checks for all homes that were flooded during Hurricane Harvey.

Understanding what to do before, during and after a hurricane can prevent your air conditioner from sustaining unnecessary damage and help keep you safe. Pay attention to the strategies outlined above, and you will be ready the next time extreme weather threatens your area. For questions or concerns about AC diagnostics or repairs please call Elite Comfort Home and Commercial Services at 832-309-3771.

The post What to Do with Your Unit Before, During, and After a Hurricane appeared first on Elite Comfort Home & Commercial Services.

From http://elitecomfortservices.com/unit-hurricane/

Is Nexia Home Automation of the Future?

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As technology continues to grow, it’s time to take advantage of the conveniences provided with home automation. With our busy lives, why not introduce something in your home to make things simpler?

Elite Comfort Home and Commercial Services now offers Nexia! Home Automation systems take the stress out of everyday homeowners’ lives. Nexia makes it easy to be in control of your home — even when you’re constantly on the go. An all-in-one app that connects your smart device through Z-Wave technology, Nexia streamlines the way you manage your home. It also helps perform everyday tasks, like locking the front door on your way out or turning on the lights before you come home. Nexia empowers you to lead an active life without worrying about what’s happening at home.

What Does Nexia Offer You?

Degrees of Expectation: Keep your home as cool or cozy as you like, even from afar. Through the Nexia app, you can control your heating and cooling system no matter where you are. By the time you step through the door, you will feel perfectly comfortable with the setting you’ve requested.

Safety: Nexia is always home. Are you going on a trip this summer? Use Nexia to give the impression that someone’s home. By setting your system to close the blinds at dusk, turn on the lights, and turn them off around bedtime, no one, not even neighbors would know you were away.

The Key to Security: Eliminate the nagging worry that you forgot to lock the door or close the garage when you were scrambling to get out of the house. Instead of driving back home, alerts on your app can inform you of an unlocked or open door.

A Smarter way to Check in: Know your children are home safe from school when they enter their unique lock codes. Once the code is entered, you’ll receive a notification and video clip of their arrival. When it’s time for homework, Nexia can turn off power to the television or other distractions to make sure it gets done.

No Surprises: A leaky water pipe can wreak havoc on your home. Nexia can act as a water leak detector. If Nexia detects a leak, it not only sends you an alert immediately, but it also turns off the water valve to prevent damage.

A Warm Welcome: Never come home to a dark house again. Add convenience and security to your nighttime arrivals by programming Nexia to turn on the lights, open your garage door, and unlock the front door as you pull into your driveway.

Is Nexia Really Worth It?

Absolutely! Even when running on an “auto” setting, the air conditioner still operates at certain times of the day when no one is home. Having the ability to turn on AC minutes before you get home, allows your unit to sit idle during the daytime and only be in use during peak hours.

Another great feature Nexia offers is the ability to connected with your preferred dealer. The application has diagnostic tools that can give your service tech real-time results on how your system is operating. When components aren’t functioning properly, Elite Comfort receives a notification and can fix a minor issue before it becomes a catastrophe.

What Are You Waiting For?

Streamline your smart home system with the Nexia app. Compatible with every smartphone operating system, the all-in-one home automation app is designed to give you access to all your connected devices in one place. With Nexia, you have the flexibility to monitor and control your home’s temperature, locks, lights, and even your garage door from virtually anywhere. Give Elite Comfort Home and Commercial Services a call at 832-309-3771 to learn more about how Nexia can benefit your home cooling (and heating) system.

The post Is Nexia Home Automation of the Future? appeared first on Elite Comfort Home & Commercial Services.

From http://elitecomfortservices.com/home-automation-future/

Tune-Up Before Summer Heats Up

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The grass is green, school’s out, and the smell of barbecue is starting to fill the weekend air which can only mean one thing – it’s time to get your HVAC system checked before Spring turns into Summer! 

AC Tune-UpWhile the Spring weather may not have necessitated turning on the air-conditioner yet, it’s the perfect opportunity to have it inspected. You want to be fully prepared to keep cool when the mercury rises and finding out your AC has issues during a heat wave isn’t the way to go. Therefore pre-Summer checkups are one of your safest investments – and they can save you money!

What’s Included in a Spring Tune-up? 

The main reason to contact us for an HVAC system checkup is for preparation. You want the peace of mind in knowing that your AC will run properly and efficiently when the time comes. This is accomplished via:

  • Cleaning – Your AC sat dormant for the last 7-8 months which means a lot of dust and debris has accumulated inside of it. Condenser coils need to be cleaned so that they can operate more efficiently and removing dust from items such as a fan help reduce wear.
  • Inspection – When sitting idle your AC may develop frayed (chewed) wires, might lose coolant, or could possibly develop holes in the duct work. An inspection makes sure these and other areas are secure so that your HVAC runs efficiently and most importantly, safely.
  • Tune-Up – A system checkup also involves lubricating parts, calibrating the thermostat, testing the motor, and 20+ other points of tuning up. This will help increase the life span of the components but also make sure you aren’t unnecessarily losing efficiency. 

If your AC turns on without any issue, you may mistakenly think that it is ready for the Summer cooling season. In actuality however you may be losing efficiency and unknowingly be causing your AC to fail much sooner than its supposed life span.

How an AC Check-Up Saves You Money 

Having our service team come inspect and tune-up your AC may seem like unnecessary overhead, especially when air-conditioner bills can be so high over the Summer as it is. The truth is, an inspection will save you money both immediately and over the long run.

First off, a clean and tuned up air-conditioner will operate more efficiently which will make decrease cycle lengths and frequency thus saving you on utility bills. Lubricating parts and inspecting for damage can also reduce the overcompensation on other components. It’s always better to pay for minor adjustments rather than costly repairs. Along those same lines, an AC that doesn’t have to work as hard will also last much longer possibly putting off a replacement for 5-10 years or more.

Finally, the reason you have an air-conditioner is to be cool. Aside from saving money, don’t you want to be sure that your AC is in proper working condition just so you, your family, and guests can be comfortable? If the answer is yes, give Elite Comfort Services a call today!

The post Tune-Up Before Summer Heats Up appeared first on Elite Comfort Home & Commercial Services.

From http://elitecomfortservices.com/tune-summer-heats/

“Auto” or “On” for Your Home HVAC Settings?

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For many homeowners as long as the air-conditioner is running on a hot day, all is well. However, while you may be feeling cool comfort, at the same time your AC could be incurring high costs mostly due to unnecessary thermostat settings. 

Air Conditioning Auto or OnThe main area of concern when it comes to the AC thermostat controls is the “auto” versus the “on” setting. Believe it or not there is a difference! Here is all you need to know on how to keep cool:

What Do Auto and On Do Regarding Your HVAC System? 

Auto and On dictate how the fan on your furnace or air-conditioner will operate. Despite some initial confusion, the two differentials really are self-explanatory. When your AC is set to “auto” the fan will run only during a cooling cycle. Opting for the “on” setting means the fan will be operating on a constant basis.

What Are the Major Advantages of Each? 

There are pros and cons to running your AC on either of the settings. The obvious advantage of running on “auto” is that the system uses less energy because the fan is operating only during a cooling cycle. This saves on utility bills because the fan can be idle for extended periods of time – especially on cooler Summer days.

Despite the fact that the fan can sit idle in between cooling cycles, that also means there are going to be multiple stops and starts during the course of a day. This can be very hard on the fan and definitely helps contribute to an early demise. When the fan starts to malfunction, other components try to overcompensate for the lack of air flow and tend to experience a shorter life-span.

There are benefits of operating the thermostat under the “on” setting and having the fan cycle constantly. The lack of starts and stops on the system will help your unit run more effectively and the air quality will be better with the “on” setting because air is continuously being cycled. This also moves conditioned air more efficiently throughout the home which cuts down on hot and cold pockets in various rooms.

So Which Setting Should You Use? 

If you want to use less energy and lower your utility bills, the “auto” setting would be the best choice. Keep in mind, that the fan can wear faster on this option and the air quality isn’t going to be as great. Each home and air-conditioning unit is unique and it would be beneficial to get an assessment on the property and its functionality by completing an HVAC audit. An audit investigates your specific air-conditioning factors (insulation, system size, home square footage) and can help determine the optimum strategy for Summer.

Elite Comfort Home and Commercial Services provides solutions to all your AC/Heating problems. For questions, concerns or to schedule routine maintenance contact a company you trust, contact Elite Comfort.

The post “Auto” or “On” for Your Home HVAC Settings? appeared first on Elite Comfort Home & Commercial Services.

From http://elitecomfortservices.com/auto-home-ac-settings/

If It’s Not Broke, Fix It??

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Okay, so the saying is a tad distorted, but it does raise an important question. When considering options, is it best to replace your AC unit even if it’s not broken? What factors do you weigh? Although the cost of purchasing a new air conditioner can be considered a big investment, so can the costs of having an older, inefficient unit that needs repairs all too often. While there’s no definitive rule, there are some important considerations to keep in mind while you make your decision.

Age of Existing Unit

Gauge the condition of your existing unit. The average lifespan of an air conditioning unit is around 10 years. If it’s around this age, you can expect frequent repairs, leaks, and possibly breakdowns.

Cost of Repairs

Rule of thumb is if repairs exceeds 50% percent of the cost of a new unit, then it’s time to replace. You could be certain that even after one expensive repair the next will be just as much if not more. In some cases, repairing a leak, adding refrigerant, and replacing a compressor can add up to the same amount as a new low-end unit.

Energy Efficiency 

You might want to replace your unit, if your existing unit still uses R-22 Freon. This refrigerant is being phased out by the federal government in order to conserve energy nationwide. As a result, HVAC manufacturers have stopped making units that require R-22 in 2015 and since then the costs of Freon has aggressively peaked. Acquiring a more efficient unit will help reduce energy costs and allows for eligibility on state and local tax credits.

Size and Capacity

Depending on home improvements you’ve made to your home, like roofing, insulation, or replacing windows, you may be able to downgrade to a smaller unit. Some contractors may have over or underestimated the calculation on the size of the equipment your property needs causing your HVAC system to overwork causing wear of equipment and inefficiency. A consultation may be able to confirm that your unit is not adequately sized in comparison to the overall amount of living space. Making this change could ultimately provide better comfort and a lower operating cost.

Outdated Technology

Replacing aging equipment and installing new features like smart thermostats could help increase efficiency and lower energy costs by 15-20%.

Financial Circumstances

If you don’t plan on staying in your home in the near future, there wouldn’t be a need to replace immediately. Either you could better market your house with the new unit or lower asking price during negotiations. This investment is entirely up to you.

Whether you choose to replace or repair your existing unit, Elite Comfort Home and Commercial Services can help evaluate your specific HVAC needs by scheduling a consultation today.

From http://elitecomfortservices.com/if-its-not-broke-fix-it/

5 Ways to Improve Airflow

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We’ve entered Spring and along with the blooming of flowers comes an abundance of warmth. As the weather changes so does humidity and it’s important to keep cool and avoid you and your home from overheating. Air conditioning is notably the easiest way to cool off, but can also be expensive if not being used effectively. To keep you cool, calm, and collective, here are five ways to improve airflow in your home:

  1. Open Up- Your air conditioning unit doesn’t have to be running all the time. The most simple and effective way to let heat out and natural air in is to open up windows and doors. Depending on weather, walk around the house opening several windows to allow airflow to circulate.
  2. Turn on Fans– And by fans we mean them all. Ceiling, exhaust and attic fans. Turning on a ceiling fan helps circulate natural and cold air throughout your house while using exhaust and attic fans help alleviate warm air that resides in kitchens, bathrooms, or attics.
  3. A little Spring cleaning– A little spring cleaning never hurt anybody. Clean or unblock vents around your home. Air from your heating and cooling systems flow through vents and sometimes can be blocked by furniture or debris that makes circulation nearly impossible. Take a look around your home and see if a couch, dresser, or table is blocking airflow.
  4. Seal Ducts– One thing you may overlook, is your home’s ductwork. Although out of sight, but duct sealing shouldn’t be out of mind. Ductwork is essential in delivering air to every room. If there are leaks and wholes, cool air won’t reach its destination causing a 30% loss. When air is lost, this puts more pressure to achieve the desired thermostat setting. Not only does it waste energy if left unfixed, but it also stresses your HVAC system and could lead to more repairs in the future.
  5. Replace Air Filters– A good rule of thumb is to check them once a month, but you’ll only need to replace them if dirty. A dirty filter reduces air flow and the unit’s efficiency and can lower energy consumption by 5% to 15%. Remember the frequency depends on type of filter, overall air quality of city, allergies and number of occupants or pets.

If these five ways lack improvement in circulation please contact a reputable company you can trust, Elite Comfort Home and Commercial Services. Elite Comfort’s mission is to provide an excellent experience to every customer by providing quality products, superior services, and personalized solutions while operating with the utmost integrity.

From http://elitecomfortservices.com/5-ways-to-improve-airflow/

There’s No Better Time than Now to Install a Smart Thermostat

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To many homeowners the thermostat is an inconspicuous device that minds its own business on a little section of wall space. The truth is however, the often-inexpensive thermostat is actually the brains behind thousands of dollars of HVAC equipment. In fact, having the correct type of thermostat can actually save you hundreds of dollars a year in utility bills while also reducing wear on your furnace and air-conditioner. 

The preaching of the last decade was that you needed to have a programmable thermostat installed as soon as possible. It makes sense – why not preprogram temperatures to be at efficient levels when you’re sleeping or away at work? As it goes, simply having a programmable thermostat is not enough anymore as now the true way for optimum energy usage is with a Smart thermostat.

Smart Thermostat vs. Programmable 

A programmable thermostat allows you to set home temperatures for many different time slots to coincide with when you’re going to bed, getting home from work, or away for the weekend. Once programmed to your desired temperature, the thermostat can only be changed manually at home.

The Smart thermostat takes efficiency to the next level by allowing you to control temperatures by internet access from phone, tablet, or computer. When life isn’t as routine as you would want it to be, a smart thermostat is perfect for unpredictable moments. For instance, a left open window, weather changes, pets or kids at home sooner than expected, or maybe you just fluctuate from hot to cold often. Smart thermostats are all about connectivity as they allow you to control your HVAC system from anywhere, at any time.

More to Smart Thermostats Than Programming and Controlling Temps

Essentially the connection between your thermostat, your HVAC system, and your WiFi device becomes a heating and air-conditioning command center. For example, notifications are sent when it’s time to change your filter or have routine maintenance performed. Receive diagnostic reports giving you detailed lists of energy consumption and data that reveals how efficiently your HVAC system is operating.

Something else that Smart thermostats actually do is learn your schedule and temperature comfort levels. What this basically means is that each time you adjust a thermostat, that time of day and day of the week is stored in the thermostats memory. Eventually all these adjustments will help your thermostat create a preference schedule of who gets home and when and the device will automatically pre-cool or pre-heat accordingly.

What to Know When Looking for a Smart Thermostat 

As long as your home has a WiFi connection, a smart thermostat can be implemented to run with your existing heating and cooling system. Something you should note is that Smart thermostats are going to be a bit more costly than solely programmable devices but its proficiency and convenience is the biggest pay off.

Two of the major brands in the Smart thermostat niche are Ecobee and Nest. Ecobee claims that their thermostats can save homeowners almost 23% in heating and cooling bills while Nest boasts 12-15%. Annual savings can exceed $150 or more which offers a very fast ROI compared to the initial costs. Plus, when your furnace and AC are running optimally, they have less wear and tear as well which can also save you on pricey repairs.

Simply put, there’s no reason to have anything but a Smart thermostat installed in your home or business. Whether you choose a programmable or smart thermostat, Elite Comfort provides services to help install or maintain your HVAC system. For more information about services or pricing, call and schedule a consultation with us today.

From http://elitecomfortservices.com/install-a-smart-thermostat/

Prepare Your Home for Winter Vacation

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Winter vacation hasn’t begun just yet. It’s almost time to clock out and mentally you’re probably already there, but before you hit the road, make sure your home is winter proof ready. Leave for the holidays knowing you can truly enjoy your time off without the need to worry about weather or security precautions.

Make a list and check it twice.

From planning the trip to packing up the suitcases make sure you’re prepared for the vacation. Jot down your to-do list, whether it is house chores, scheduling/cancelling appointments or holiday shopping, write them all down. Avoid the chance of any loose ends.

A clean home is a happy home.

The worst thing after a long trip is coming home to a house left unkempt. Try to accomplish the basic household chores. Empty the trash inside and outside to avoid the presence of pests.  Clear out the refrigerator of perishable items that won’t last the duration of your trip. Days-old food never leaves a good odor, imagine a week or two.

As safe as houses.

Home fires kill more Americans than natural disasters; the two leading appliances include washing machines and dryers. Routinely remove the lint from the filter, but also check for stray clothing behind both appliances. Remember with major appliances to not use extension cords, plug in directly to outlet. For a clear conscious, be on the safe side and unplug appliances until your return.

Ring the alarm.

While on vacation, you want to maintain the appearance that your home is occupied. In doing so check exterior motion detectors, surveillance cameras, and alarm systems. Confirm that all are in working order including smoke detectors. Valuable items should be stored away in a safe deposit box and especially out of plain sight. Depending on the length and destination of your trip, notify your home security company of your absence.

Phone a friend. 

Choose someone you trust and believe is reliable. Leave an itinerary and a list of contacts for them to use in case of emergency. Have them drop by to feed pets/water plants, check the mail and adjust the thermostat if needed depending on the unpredictable Texas weather.

With your checklist complete, get ready to celebrate the holidays and enjoy your winter vacation rest assured that your home will be safe and sound.

Sources:   https://www.bobvila.com/articles/502-winter-preparation-checklist/

From http://elitecomfortservices.com/prepare-your-home-for-winter-vacation/

How to Keep Down Your Energy Heating Costs During the Colder Months

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The Winter is hard for two main reasons. One, it’s cold as the dickens out which not only affects our bodies but also vehicles and pretty much everything else exposed to the elements. Second, the costs of heating our homes in the Winter often adds legitimately thousands of dollars to house operational costs which can be debilitating to many people.

blogkeepingenergydownwintermonthsThere’s not a whole lot that can be done about the cold weather except layer up and cross off the days until Spring. When it comes to Winter energy costs however, there’s no reason you shouldn’t be doing everything in your power to pay as low as possible. For one it’s your money you might as well save it for the holidays but also keeping down your energy costs is relatively simple with a few key tips:

Take Proper Care of Your Windows

Even double paned insulated glass windows can benefit from sealing plastic over the top of them in the Winter. It’s just one more layer that cold has to pass through to enter the home and an extra barrier that helps retain heat. Even after weatherizing, you can install tight-fitting insulating drapes to virtually eliminate any threats of drafts. It’s also important to take advantage of your windows though – specifically opening up the South facing windows during the day so that sunlight can naturally warm your home.

Furnace and Thermostat Care

Your furnace is going to be busting it’s hump in the Winter so the least you can do is lighten the workload. This means having your furnace properly maintained and cleaned before the heating season and staying on top of filter changes throughout the Winter. You should also install a programmable thermostat so that your furnace can lay low during the day when nobody is home and at night while people are sleeping. This $30 or so investment can cut your heating costs by up to 10% or more.

Other Ways to Lower Energy Costs During Winter

A lot of lowering your energy costs during the Winter involves spending elbow grease instead of spending money. By being tedious and paying attention to detail you can make your home a fortress for retaining heat and expelling cold over the Winter season. Some examples include:

  • Sealing up air leaks (caulking or spray foam) around windows and doors and from broken siding.
  • Plugging a chimney flue if you don’t plan on using it.
  • Turn down your water heater
  • Use LED bulbs and put your holiday lighting on a timer
  • Adjust ceiling fans to clockwise to keep heat pushed down towards the room

Of course you can also spend money as a way to save money on your energy costs. For example, you can install a secondary heat source such as a pellet stove as a way to lower the strain on your furnace. Many homeowners have found that an insulation upgrade, especially in the attic, can save them up to 30% annually on their Winter energy costs.

There is no one surefire way to lower your heating and energy bills this Winter. Instead what ends up happening is that you develop an overall cost saving strategy over the years – adding to it each season until your bills are optimized.

From http://elitecomfortservices.com/keep-heating-costs-down/