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Cold Weather Brings Energy Bill Focus

The snow and ice that blanketed much the country this week was a stark reminder that winter doesn’t always wait for the calendar. It also means that the deep freeze is here, but it’s not too late to take precautions to lower your winter energy bills.

piggyThe U.S. Department of Energy has some great tips on how to make your home more energy efficient, and we thought it was time for a review. Here are a few no-cost and low-cost steps to reduce your energy usage this heating season.

Use the Sun
• Open curtains on your south-facing windows during the day to allow sunlight to naturally heat your home, and close them at night to reduce the chill you may feel from cold windows.

Cover Drafty Windows
• Use a heavy-duty, clear plastic sheet around to the inside of your window frames during the cold winter months. Make sure the plastic is sealed tightly to the frame to help reduce the cold air leakage.

Turn Down the Thermostat
• When you are home and awake, keep the temperature as low as is comfortable. Go ahead and put on that sweater.
• When you go to bed or leave for work, turn it back 10 to 15 degrees. Doing so for eight hours a day can save around 10%.

Fill In the Cracks
• Seal the air leaks around utility cut-throughs for pipes, gaps around chimneys and recessed lights in insulated ceilings, and unfinished spaces behind cupboards and closets.

• Add caulk or weather stripping to seal air leaks around leaky doors and windows. And be sure to remove those window air conditioners.

Maintain Your Systems
• For natural gas furnaces, replace your filter once a month or as needed.

Reduce the Loss from Your Fireplace
• Keep your fireplace damper closed unless a fire is burning. Otherwise it’s like keep a window open. If you never use your fireplace, plug and seal the chimney flue.

• If you do use the fireplace, install tempered glass doors and a heat-air exchange system that blows warmed air back into the room.

Turn Down the Water
• Set your hot water heater to 120 degrees. It’ll save energy and reduce your chance of scalding burns.

Holiday Lighting
• Transition to LED holiday lighting. Those bulbs can save 90 percent in utility costs, burn at much lower temperatures, and can last 20,000 hours. Now that’s a lot of holidays.

“We encourage all of our customers to think about energy efficiency as we head toward cooler temperatures,” AGR Group President Matt Judkin said. “Increased awareness and conservation, coupled with one of our clients’ fixed-rate electricity or natural gas plans, will go a long way in keeping reducing a household’s overall energy cost.

US Power and Gas energy consultants work with home and business owners to lower their long-term energy costs through money-saving and price-protection commodity contracts. If you’d like to lower your clients’ electricity and natural gas costs while building your own career based on residual income, learn more today.

US Power and Gas
9701 International Court North, Suite A
St. Petersburg, FL 33716