Your home heating and energy use

You use energy every day to heat, cool and light your home, heat your water and run your appliances. But did you know you use the most energy to heat your home?

Average energy use at home1

Average energy use at home

Home heating: the biggest energy user

Whether natural gas, electricity or propane, about 50 per cent of the energy used in a home goes toward space heating; while another 26 per cent is used for heating water.1

With colder winter temperatures it can take even more energy to keep your home at a comfortable temperature consistently.2

And with cold snaps, we tend to turn up the thermostat and run our furnaces, fireplaces or baseboards more often and for longer periods of time.3

As your home heating is running more often, more energy is used and this can result in higher winter energy bills.

How to reduce your energy use

The good news is there are ways to reduce your energy use, such as:

  • Programmable thermostat – using this type of thermostat and setting it correctly can save up to 15 per cent on your home heating bill.4
  • Draftproofing – gaps, cracks and leaks around doors or windows lead to heat loss – and heat loss is money loss when it comes to energy use.5

See more energy-saving tips for your home

How much energy do you use?

Understanding how much energy you use, when and how, will help you take control and manage your bills better. Here are some tips and online tools to help you during winter and year-round:

Save more with rebates

If it’s time to upgrade your space and/or water heating equipment to high-efficiency, or increase the insulation in your attic, crawlspace or walls, we’ve got rebates on high-efficiency equipment and products to help make the upgrades more affordable. Plus, we also offer rebate programs for income-qualified customers

We’re here to help

Concerned about paying your natural gas or electricity bill? Together, we’ll find solutions that can help. For example, you could switch to monthly billing or sign up for our Equal Payment Plan, which offers fixed monthly payments that avoid seasonal highs and lows. Contact us to learn more. 

  • Electricity customers call: 1-866-436-7847, Monday-Friday, 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • Natural gas customers call: 1-888-224-2710, Monday-Friday, 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.

1Source: Natural Resources Canada, Office of Energy Efficiency, Comprehensive Energy Use Database, residential sector, BC, Table 2: Secondary Energy Use, 2016.
2Based on an average of FortisBC’s customer’s natural gas usage over three years.
3Based on FortisBC’s energy utilization manager calculation, 2020.
4 Source: CMHC, Effects of Thermostat Setting on Energy Consumption; when programmed to 20 °C when home (for a maximum of 10 hours per day) and 17 °C when out or asleep (for a minimum of 14 hours per day). Maximum savings achieved on colder days.
5Source: 2017 Residential End Use Survey – Thermal Envelope and Energy related renovations.