Energy prices on the rise and Omaha Public Power District is proposing to increase rates by 5.9%. Omahan’s can expect to see a higher electric bill as temperatures start to drop and they make the switch from air conditioning to heat. We’d like to share a few simple tips that will help save energy, retain heat and keep your bill at a reasonable rate.
1. Check for drafts.
According to the U.S. Department of energy, drafts can waste 5% to 30% of your energy use. The good thing about that is it’s an easy fix! Simply block drafts by placing a rolled up towel up against doors where drafts are prone to happen. Or, you can use a draft snake – a more permanent and sleek looking way to block drafts.
2. Reverse ceiling fans
Most people don’t know that there is a switch on ceiling fans that allow you to reverse the direction in which the blades oscillate. Switch the fans so they move clockwise, that will push warm air down and force it to recirculate around the room.
3. Change the Windows
Storm doors and windows can increase energy efficiency in your home by 45%. By installing storm doors and windows on the outside of your regular doors and windows you reduce airflow. This really makes a difference when the cold wind starts blowing. Storm windows and doors offer that extra layer of protection. Additionally, federal tax credits are available to help offset the cost of purchasing them by up to 30%.
4. Put on a Sweater
Make like Jimmy Carter and put on a sweater! As much flack as he got for that comment back in 1977, it holds some truth. Not only does adding layers save energy, it really can help reduce the heating bill. When you put an extra layer on you can add four degrees to your body’s temperature. So you can keep your thermostat at 68 degrees and your body will be at a cozy 72 degrees!