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(KSL News) -- Americans warming their homes this winter can expect to be hit with high heating costs. But did you know there are some simple steps you can take to lower your electricity bill?
One of the most cost effective ways to reduce energy bills is to air-seal holes, cracks and openings in your home and then add insulation to stop the flow of heat through walls and ceilings.
Setting your hot water temperature no higher than 120 degrees can cut your water heating costs by as much as ten-percent.
Your ceiling fan can help adjust your thermostat for more energy savings. Reverse the spin of the fan and set it on the slowest speed to help send warm air down to the living area.
You should replace your furnace's air filter before the heating season begins. A dirty filter reduces airflow, making your system work harder to deliver air to the registers.
When used properly, a programmable thermostat can save you 100 dollars a year in energy costs.
Setting your thermostat back ten degrees at night could reduce your overall heating bill by ten to 20 percent.
A family of four, each showering for five minutes a day, uses 700 gallons of water. That's enough to supply one person with three years-worth of drinking water.
In review, the US department of energy suggests taking the following steps to help save energy and money:
- Lower the thermostat on your hot water heater to 120 degrees.
- Install a programmable thermostat that's compatible with your heating system.
- Air dry dishes instead of using your dishwasher's drying cycle.
- Plug home electronics into power strips.
- Wash only full loads of clothes and dishes.
- Turn your computer and monitor off when not in use.
- Use compact fluorescent bulbs.
- Take short showers instead of baths.