Posted Friday November 12, 2012 --- 4:55 p.m.
Wisconsin winters are rough. Last year was an exception. But if things return to normal your heating bill will go up.
According to Madison Gas and Electric last year the average home owner spent about $413 on heat. This year MG&E thinks they'll spend about $485.
Jack Eich with MG&E says, " We had one of the mildest winters ever last year. So our forecasts are based on 25-year history. So if we have a typical winter it'll be about $75 more per customer. "
There are some things you can do to keep your heating bill down. Curt Johnson with Action Heating, Plumbing and Electric says the best thing you can do is have your furnace serviced. Sooner is better than later.
" You really don't want to wait until November when it starts getting really cold. "
When the technician gets to your home they'll look at a couple of things like your furnace's air filter. If the filter isn't clean your heater will consume more electricity and your bill, which is already expected to go up, could be even higher.
" It won't shut down the furnace. But what happens is if the filter's dirty and the air can not flow through the furnace can overheat. "
They'll also take a look at your exhaust. If your furnace isn't burning gas efficiently it will take more to heat your home and cost you extra cash.
Johnson says, " If those levels are high we really need to go in and do a real thorough cleaning on the burner. "