10 Ways to Save on Your Utility Bills This Winter

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When we think of the winter season we often think of the holidays, chunky sweaters and cold weather. However, what we tend to forget is that a drop in the temperature often means a rise in our electric or gas bill. Our mortgage professionals are here to help. They have developed a list of ten ways you can make the most of your energy dollar this winter season. Follow our list of tips below and give yourself the gift of a lower electric or gas bill this holiday season.

 

  1. Dress accordingly. Before cranking up the temperature on the thermostat, consider putting a sweater on. It may sound crazy, but for every degree you raise your thermostat in the winter, your utility bill rises approximately three percent.
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  3. Replace or clean the filters regularly. A good rule of thumb is to clean or replace your furnace filters once a month or as needed. If you are like the majority of us who forget to check the filters, then set a reminder for yourself. We promise it’s worth it; this simple task could improve your systems’ energy efficiency by ten percent.
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  5. Keep the warm-air registers, baseboard heaters and radiators clean. Also, make sure none of the items previously listed are being blocked by drapes, carpeting or furniture.
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  7. Once or twice a winter season, bleed trapped air from hot-water radiators. If you are unsure how to go about completing this task, contact a professional.
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  9. Position heat-resistant radiator reflectors between exterior walls and the radiators.
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  11. Use ventilating fans with caution. Kitchen and bath ventilating fans can suck out a houseful of warm air in one short hour. If you absolutely must use one of these fans, be sure to turn it off as soon as the job is done.
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  13. During the winter season, keep your draperies and shades open during the day. Doing so will allow natural sunlight to enter the room. When the sun goes down, keep your window coverings closed to keep the cool night chill out.
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  15. Keep the doors to unoccupied rooms closed. If your spare guest bedroom is not expecting any visitors until Thanksgiving, there really is no point to heat the room now. If you are unsure as to whether or not closing vents in these areas will harm your air system, don’t do it. Instead, just keep the door closed.
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  17. If you have it in your budget, consider installing double-pane windows with protective coating that reflects heat back into your home during the winter. If installing new windows is not in your budget, try covering your windows with a plastic film. Believe it or not, this only costs about $4-$6 per window and can reduce the heat lost through windows by 25-50 percent.
  18. Weather strip and caulk around exterior seams, openings and cracks. On the inside, weather strip and caulk around windows and door frames. By doing this, you cut back on the cool drafts that slip through the cracks.

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