How to Save Energy and Reduce Your Natural Gas Bill During the Winter Months
By Catherine Bryan
Wouldn't it be nice to save money on your natural gas bill during the long winter months? Heating your home is expensive, but you may end up paying far more than you need to due to energy lost on drafty windows, poor insulation, and other easily-fixed problems. National Fuel's "Fuel for Thought Energy Savings Guide" encourages customers to be proactive when managing their natural gas use. The guide provides useful information on how to conserve energy in your home.
Energy Make-Over for Your House:
Insulation is the most important energy-saver of all.
A well-insulated attic or crawl space can save you up to 30%.
Install thermal windows and doors. A less expensive way is to use plastic coverings on older windows and draft blockers on the bottom of old doors.
Set your hot water tank to no higher than 120 degrees.
Caulk or weather strip around windows and doors to prevent loss of heat.
Simple Ways to Save Energy While Cooking:
Adjust the flame under your pan to fit while cooking.
Use a minimum amount of water in the pan and cover so food can heat more quickly.
Place pan on burner, then turn flame on.
Immediately turn off burner when cooking is complete.
Avoid opening oven when cooking.
Use a pressure cooker to save time, energy, and money.
Use your outside, natural gas grill more since it uses less energy.
Simple Ways to Stay Warm
Have your heating system checked before winter.
Replace filters in your heating system before winter arrives and clean them monthly throughout the winter.
Use ceiling fans to push down warm air.
On sunny days, open your curtains and blinds to let in the sunshine.
Dust and vacuum air ducts.
Do not open and close doors needlessly.
Add extra blankets to the beds.
Set thermostats at 65 to 70 degrees during the day and 58 degrees at night.
According to National Fuel, "natural gas is the most efficient and cleanest fossil fuel available." According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), "natural gas produces a significantly smaller volume of greenhouse gasses compared to oil or other fossil fuels used in the production of electricity."
First Photo Above is a Creative Commons Image by Porschelinn
Second Photo is a Creative Commons Image by Hitthatswitch