Ways to reduce your energy consumption during the winter

While residents of the United States might have thought that the worst of the winter had already passed, many are now discovering that we are in for another round of brutal weather. Some southern states – particularly Georgia – will be hit hard again, despite having recently dug themselves out of conditions they were not adequately prepared for. Many in the Midwest and East Coast are still reeling from the last major storm, with thousands still without power in the state of Pennsylvania, where President Barack Obama has declared a state of emergency.

Because of this weather, people are finding their monthly energy bills skyrocketing, spending more and more money just to keep their house comfortable. If you are in this situation, here are a few tips you can implement to reduce your energy consumption:

  • Turn off and unplug all nonessential lights and appliances while they are not being used. Even if you think a machine is doing nothing, having it plugged in means it will continue to consume energy. This is both harmful to the environment and a waste of money.
  • Seal any and all air leaks around your windows and doors. The less air you lose through these small leaks, the less money you will have to spend on heating each month. Air leaks are one of the biggest sources of wasted energy in any household and they are very easy to fix.
  • Your thermostat should always be kept at 68 degrees while you are at home. This is warm enough to keep you comfortable and prevent any of your house's pipes from freezing. While out, keep it set 10 to 15 degrees lower, as this can trim 5 to 15 percent off your energy bills.

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