Probably the biggest myth is keeping the temp steady. My Propane company told me I was wasting gas by turning the heat up and down and advised me to keep it steady. Every single source I can find says this is false. They only make money selling me propane, so why would I expect them to want me to save it! It's a rumor that seems it just won't die though. The fact is you use a lot more heating fuel and energy warming a room all day and night than you do warming it up in the morning and when you get home from work. I suspect the rumor may have started because people would shut the heat OFF and not turn it DOWN, but where I live doing that carries a substantial risk for pipes freezing, and I will not be testing to see if there is a difference.
- Get a programmable thermostat and set the heat as low as you can stand it at night. A fuzzy blanket and warm PJ's are a great investment. A programmable thermostat is great because it allows you to have the temp more reasonable for showering when you awaken. You can then drop the temp a bit when no one is home.
- Insulate, what I found to be the best was to walk around barefoot and touch the walls, find the cold spots and then investigate. We found that the crawl space behind the wall in my bedroom had no insulation at all, and because there was a door to access the crawl space, the cold got into the bedroom from there, and also the cold got into the floor below via the ceiling, insulating that small area made a difference in heat loss in the bedroom and may not affect my heating bill very much for the downstairs, but we do feel warmer. Look for the higher R values when purchasing insulation
- Burn incense in various corners of the rooms. This will help you to identify drafts that can be blocked.
- close or block registers for rooms that you are not using, this will direct heat into the rooms in use.
- Keep filters clean. the best vent filters block more dust and trap more dirt, thus they do clog up faster and put more demand on the fan to circulate the warmed air. Your lungs, nose and wallet will thank you for changing these more often.
When not in use, be sure to have installed glass doors and consider a fireplace blanket to further prevent heat loss.