Today is National Cut Your Energy Costs Day, a day to think of ways we can cut our energy costs and save both money and our environment.
One of the first places to start is with a high-efficiency furnace. In the new tax bill, Congress approved a tax credit of up to $500 for people who install high-energy furnaces. Rebates and interest-free financing are also available. Contact your local HVAC dealer for details.
There are other ways to save energy, of course. They include window and door stripping and placing plastic over windows.
Also check outlets and light switches. Often, people forget to insulate around those, making them a major source of cold air leaks.
With fairly mild weather recently, you might also consider installing a storm door to keep out the cold.
Also consider turning down the thermostat a few degrees, particularly when you aren't home. After all, it doesn't make a lot of sense to keep an empty house all that warm. Turning down the thermostat just five or 10 degrees can make a big difference in your heat bill.
Another thing you can do is close heat registers in unused rooms, particularly if there's no pipes that could freeze. Again, there's no sense in heating a room with no one in it.
Unfortunately, we don't really think about saving energy costs until we get that first big heating bill for the winter - which for most folks was probably just recently. That of course makes saving energy a timely reminder - and one we should all heed.