Heating Your Home This Winter Could Cost Less Than Last Year

By: Bill Martens
By: Bill Martens

It won't be long until the snow starts falling. While you may not want to think about that right now, at least take comfort in knowing your heating bill probably won't be quite as

Of course, we can't control the weather, but if we don't see an extremely cold winter, and the economy is in relatively good shape, the C.E.O. of Wisconsin Public Service says you can probably expect to see a decrease in heating costs.

"All the caverns have been filled and we're back to normal storage levels for natural gas going into the winter," C.E.O. Larry Weyers says. "That's pretty comforting. If we don't get real cold weather anywhere in the United States early in the winter, we should be able to keep prices of natural gas down also."

Weyers also says you can keep heat costs down by making sure your home in properly insulated.

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Energy Facts

  • The typical U.S. family spends close to $1,300 a year on their home's utility bills.

  • A large portion of that energy is wasted.

  • The amount of energy wasted just through poorly insulated windows and doors is about as much energy as we get from the Alaskan pipeline each year.

  • Electricity generated by fossil fuels for a single home puts more carbon dioxide into the air than two average cars.

What can YOU do?

  • The key to achieving these savings is a whole-house energy efficiency plan.

    • The first step to taking a whole-house energy efficiency approach is to find out which parts of your house use the most energy.

    • To find out which parts are using the most energy, you should conduct a home energy audit.
      • A consumer brief on home energy audits is available from the U.S. Department of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Clearinghouse.

      • There is also the Home Energy Saver created by the Lawrence Berkeley Lab which will use detailed information from you to estimate your home's energy usage.

      • You can contact your local utility.

      • You can also call an independent energy auditor for a more comprehensive examination.

    • After you have identified places where your home is losing energy, assign priorities to your energy needs by asking yourself a few important questions:
      • How much money do you spend on energy?
      • Where are your greatest energy losses?
      • How long will it take for an investment in energy efficiency to pay for itself in energy savings?
      • Can you do the job yourself, or will you need to hire a contractor?
      • What is your budget and how much time do you have to spend on maintenance and repair?

    • These things should get you started, and for more information visit our source.

    Source: http://www.eren.doe.gov/consumerinfo/energy_savers/ (The U.S. Department of Energy "Energy Savers" Web site)

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