We look forward to the fall and winter seasons all year due to the festivities that come with them. While waiting for Halloween, Christmas, and New Year, most of us forget that the festivities of Canadian winters are topped with increased energy bills.

Who doesn’t love the idea of cranking up the heat, cozying up in their living area, and sipping hot chocolate as the snow falls outside? This all sounds like a dream until the spiked utility bills hit you like a ton of bricks.

According to ENMAX, the average home uses 40% more natural gas and 8% more electricity for every 10°C drops below zero. Now imagine how costly it can be to heat your home when temperatures fall up to -40°C. Whether you choose natural gas or electricity to heat your home in winters, you will feel the impact of winters on your utility bills.

Like every other commodity, electricity and natural gas prices spike in winters due to increased demand. Hence, you must be careful how larger appliances in your house operate.

In this article, we have compiled a list of reasons that might be leading to an increase in your energy bills. We have also listed a solution for these issues.

Improper Insulation

If you feel like the compressor of your heating system is on for a significant amount of time, even if you have lowered the thermostat, there is a high chance that your house is losing heat.

Your thermostat system is responsible for maintaining the temperature of your house according to the calibrated temperature. It detects the temperature in different areas of your house and determines if there is a need to turn on the heating system.

Hence, if there is a leak in your house due to improper insulation, the thermostat will keep firing up the HVAC system due to the temperature difference. Other signs that indicate a loss of heat due to improper insulation are:
Certain rooms seem drafty
The uneven temperature in some rooms.
High-temperature variations between rooms
Cold Floors, Ceilings, and Walls
The house stays chilly despite the heater being on

If you feel like the house is colder than you would like it to be, boost the temperature. Make sure you do not set it to an extreme temperature hoping to warm up your house faster. Setting the thermostat to very high does not increase the temperature at a faster pace; all it does is consume more energy by making your heating system run for a longer time.

If your house still does not warm up properly and the temperature in different rooms and areas of your house is inconsistent, it is a sign of insulation problems. You might have to call in a professional HVAC technician to look into the situation.

Leak In The Ducts

Most of the houses in Canada have a forced-air heating system installed. Even a small leak in the duct system can lead to an increased energy bill. Moreover, sometimes a sudden force of air can disconnect ducts which can cause massive loss of energy.

Ductworks are usually accessible from the basement or the attic. If you suspect a leak in the duct, you can self-diagnose the issue by feeling or listening for and leaks.

However, if you find the leak, have a professional fix the problem. Don’t try to fix it by yourself. If there is a leak, there might be other issues with the duct that can only be diagnosed by a professional.

Old Furnace

The average life of a furnace is 25 years. If your unit is old, it is time for you to consider a replacement. Even though the upfront cost will be large, it will help you save a lot on the energy bills. You can invest in an 80 percent efficient or a 96 percent efficient system. Depending on the type of system you choose, you can save up to 20 percent on utility bills every month.

There is no way to prevent your furnace from aging. However, you can prolong its lifespan by routine maintenance and repairs. If you hire a professional to do a health check on your heating system before winter, you will keep worn-out parts, carbon monoxide leaks, and dirt or rust at bay, which will help you save money on utility bills.


Heating systems have a fair share of issues that lead to higher consumption of energy in most cases. Hence, to save money on utility bills and increase the lifespan of your heating system, it is best to hire a professional to do a health check of the ducts as well as the furnace.

In addition to this, it is important to ensure that your thermostat is working properly. If it is not, it might misdiagnose the temperature and keep the furnace running at all times.

Author's Bio: 

This article enlists the potential reasons you are dealing with higher utility bills in the winter. These can be mitigated by proper maintenance and repair.