Home Improvement - Saving on Your Energy Bills

By: Paul Duxbury

As we all know with the changes in supply and our increased focus on environmental issues heating costs continue to rise every year. The Natural disasters which seem to occur more often and other world events inflate the prices of home heating expenses, for electric, gas and oil furnaces. However all is not doom and gloom as there are steps that you can take to lower your bills and save some money for other things or just to brace for the next rise in energy costs for your home.

Think about the tips below and see what you can do to lower your bills by conserving energy in your home.

Insulate Windows. Go though your house and check your windows. Make sure theyíre well sealed. A good test is to do a smoke test. Turn off all fans and stand close to a window and produce some smoke perhaps with a match taking care not to burn yourself or anything! If thereís a minute leak of interior home air to the outside the smoke will move in the direction toward the window. Kits can be bought at your local hardware or home improvement store for insulation.

Buy a Ceiling Fan. Because warm air rises youíll want to get the warmer air down low by buying a ceiling fan. Reversible switches come on most all models and can be used in summer time too. The relative cost of the ceiling fan and its usage costs are quickly made up in savings.

Shut Doors. If a room is not being used then shut the door and leave it closed. This is really useful if youíre not using the room for any length of time. Rooms that are used some of the time will have the door fanned and cold air will escape into the others rooms. Of course this will cause your boiler to work harder, and drive your heating costs up.

Close Curtains and Mini Blinds. If a wintry day is sunny or even if there is minimal sun, make sure you open them during the daylight hours but shut them as soon as it starts to go dark. The warmth from the sunís rays will help warm the house and by closing the curtains you can keep it trapped for the night time. Re-open them when the sun comes up the following morning.

Weather Proof Doors and Seal Windows. Drafts arenít necessary around doors if they have been weather stripped. Look around the bottoms of doors, and if air is streaming in then weather proof it. Check windows too because wear and the age of windows can let in cold air too. Caulk and seal windows, and if interior of seal is damaged replace it with the correct seal type.

Realign Doors. Doors just like windows can over time begin to sag from their original tight fitting position. Before winter sets in go around and really look at how your door closes. Adjust them for a good fitting.

Replace the Air Filter. You can eliminate unnecessary high cost bills by conserving energy by simply changing out a clogged air filter. Not only does the clogging cause your system to run slowly, but the danger is it can get into the motor and cause a fire, or just burn up the motor itself.

Close House Vents. In autumn and winter shut up the vents that allow circulation of air during the summer time. In the winter the goal is to keep all cold air out. Cold air under the floor boards infiltrates the house and drives up heating cost.

Check Roof Top Insulation. If itís been a few years since you last checked out the insulation in your attic then go up and look around. Insulation should have enough air pockets to trap the cold air and push it back from the interior of the house. Old rotten insulation is usually brittle and flat. Replace the insulation with new and youíll see evidence of your energy conservation in your heating costs.

By implementing just a few of these tips you will see start to see results. There is so much more that you can do too. Go online and read other different ways to conserve energy. Talk with your local energy provider to see if there are tips for your area that will help lower your bills, and drive down costs for everyone. In the end you wonít regret that youíve used the tips!

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Paul Duxbury offers more advice at his Home Improvement site at home--improvement.blogspot.com

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