OPINION

Health and Wellness: Heating help is available

Ann Cochran - Dallas County Health Department
Special to Dallas County News and Perry Chief

If you’re anxious about your financial ability to heat your home this winter, contact New Opportunities to enroll in the LIHEAP energy assistance program. Your family must meet the income guidelines, and the person whose name is on the heating bill must apply. A Health Navigator from Dallas County Health Department can assist you. Email phn@dallascountyiowa.gov or call 515-993-3750. 

If you aren’t eligible for LIHEAP, get on budget billing with your energy company. 

MidAmerican Energy describes the relationship between your thermostat setting and your heating bill. If you set your thermostat at 68 degrees all the time, here’s what happens when you change the setting. 

Increasing the thermostat to 70 degrees will make your bill go up about 8%. Pushing the temperature to 74 degrees increases your bill by 25%. 

Turning down the thermostat provides savings in the same pattern. These examples would be for a thermostat always on the same temperature. Most people save on their bill by turning down the heat during the night and while everyone is gone from the home. Programable thermostats can adjust automatically so you don’t have to manually keep changing it or worry about running the furnace when it isn’t needed.