TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTHI) The Wabash Valley got its first glimpse of snow on Monday. As colder temperatures set in, there are two routes home-owners usually take to get through the winter. Some crank up the thermostat for warmth and others turn their heater off to keep their utility bill low. If you're turning your heater off to save money, that could cost you much more in the long run.
"When the pipes freeze, and there's too much of a shock to the pipes, it can break. And when they break, and the temperature goes back up, the water leaks out, and you have a problem," said Marc Buechner, Owner of Hoosier Heating & Cooling in Terre Haute.
According to Beuchner, that problem could cost anywhere from $500 to $5,000, depending on where the damage is. If you turn your heater on high for a few hours, then turn it off; that isn't helping either.
Experts say doing that forces your H-VAC unit to work much harder in the cold and will result in a higher bill. Beuchner said the best way to keep your utility bill under control while keeping your heater on is to set your thermostat at a specific temperature and stick with it.
"In the wintertime, keep it at about 68 degrees, and leave it there." "If the temperature is below 60 or so outside, keep your thermostat always set at a temperature level that's comfortable for you," Buechner said.
Buechner also mentioned it's essential to change your filter often. If it gets clogged, your system will shut down and leave you with no heat. He said you could tell when it's time to replace your filter just by looking at it.
"When you look through [the filter], and there's no light anymore, it's definitely time," he said.
As the weather continues to turn much colder, be sure to stay updated on your winter weather by downloading the Storm Team 10 app.