Keeping your home nice and warm during the winter is obviously a top priority, but one thing that you might be worried about is how much it will cost you. It's true that electric bills and gas bills can rise substantially during the winter, but there is a good chance that you're spending more on home heat than you should. These are a few signs that you're spending too much; luckily, making a few simple changes can help you slash your heating bills dramatically.

1. You Haven't Had Your Heater Maintained This Year

It's a good idea to have your heating system inspected, maintained, and repaired once per year, at the beginning of the season. Then, your heating repair company, such as Pioneer Comfort, can ensure that your heater is operating as efficiently and effectively as possible. Even though you'll have to pay a repair bill, there is a good chance that your savings throughout the course of the season will be much higher than what you spend on repair. Plus, you can help prevent the need for more costly fixes or a replacement.

2. You Don't Have a Programmable Thermostat

Nobody wants to come home to a cold house each evening, but keeping your home at a toasty temperature all day long can be a pretty big waste of electricity or gas. Instead of heating your home all day long, consider investing in a programmable thermostat. Then, you can adjust your heat so that it turns on an hour or so before you get home each day, allowing you to heat your home for a fraction of each day.

3. You Haven't Sealed Up Your Home

Even newer homes can have air leaks, and older homes are even more prone to this issue. If you haven't gone around to check for leaks around your windows and doors, there is a good chance that you're losing more heat than you think. Luckily, caulk and weatherstripping can fix these problems.

4. You Keep Your Thermostat Set Too High

Many people don't realize it, but adjusting your thermostat even a little bit can help you save more than you probably think. For example, setting your thermostat back by just one degree for eight hours a day can help you save one percent on your heating bill. Try knocking your thermostat back just a couple of degrees; you probably won't even notice the difference until you receive your heating bill for the month.

A lot of people spend far too much on heating bills each winter, but following these four tips can help you enjoy excellent cost savings each month throughout the season.