The bitterly cold temperatures may have you wondering -- what's the best source to heat your home and save you money?
During the cold weather, many people like to stay inside their nice warm home; but if your heating source goes out it can cause major problems. "My furnace decided to not work Friday morning. I have my in-laws coming into town from Pennsylvania and thought we needed heat," says Jeremy Steach.
Jeremy Steach lives in Kingsport, and he tells us problems with his furnace are nothing new. "This furnace seems to act up every time it gets below a certain temperature. It acted up the last time I used the furnace when it got this cold," he said.
We learned Steach is one of many people across the Tri-Cities who are without heat after their furnace or heating source went out. "You're getting a lot of load on these units where people are keeping them on all the time," adds David Cox.
Cox is a service technician for Kingsport Heating and Cooling. He tells us they receive dozens of calls for help during the bitterly cold winter months. "Compressors, they are just running all the time your auxiliary heat is running," he said.
Cox has advice for protecting your heat pump and sparing you the cold. "Change your filters and make sure you get your unit serviced at least once, if not twice, a year. We can have a look at those things to kind of warn you [about potential trouble]," he said.
He also suggests leaving your heat at a constant level; don't turn it down when you leave your home, or cut off the heat to one room. Cox says to keep a close eye on your heat pump to make sure no ice or snow builds up on it, and have a backup heat source if needed, like homeowner Jeremy Steach. "Natural gas is my auxiliary back up heat for this furnace," he told us.
Cox tells us natural gas and propane are secondary heating sources for some homes, and that could help protect you and your family if your heat pump does go out.
Cox says to keep your blinds open to let natural light help heat your home. Also, make sure furniture isn't covering any of the vents in your home, because that will prevent the heat from reaching the whole room.