6 Ways to Get Lower Utility Bills this Winter11/10/2014The winter season brings a bunch of fun activities and events, but it can also take a toll on your pocketbook. From holiday lights to maintaining a warm home during harsh weather, many Columbus families have high energy expenses. Luckily, there are easy ways to reduce your expenses and achieve lower utility bills. Our experts at Wolfe & Sons Inc in Columbus created a list of ways you can save. Try them out and experience lower utility bills this winter season. 1. Adjust your thermostat. Set your thermostat to lower heating output at times when you’re asleep or not home. Three to five percent more energy is required when your furnace is set above 68 degrees, so try keeping your home at 68 degrees when you’re at home and awake, and lower to 55-65 degrees at times when you’re away at work, out of town or sleeping to achieve lower utility bills. 2. Make sure you only wash when you have full loads. Don’t do laundry until you have enough for full loads. This will save you money on water heating, water usage and on heat needed for the dryer. You don’t want to do more laundry than you have to anyway, right? And, keep in mind: cleaning out the lint trap after every load can save you up to $34 a year, according to PG&E. 3. Conduct a home energy audit. A home energy audit can help you find the spots where your home is losing energy through leaks, drafts, or products and appliances that use extra energy. The assessment can show you how to save the most, including long- and short-term energy-saving possibilities. 4. Properly seal your leaks. From your heating and cooling ducts to attics, walls and windows, there are plenty of areas in your home that may be letting cold air seep through. Simply tape heavy plastic over the windows, and add caulk or weatherstripping to seal leaks coming through doors and windows. Contact Wolfe & Sons Inc to learn more about sealing your air ducts. 5. Use LED holiday lights. One of the easiest ways to receive lower utility bills is to switch out your less efficient holiday lights for LED lights. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, LEDs use less energy than incandescent bulbs and can last up to 40 holiday seasons in Columbus. 6. Install a high-efficiency furnace. If you need to upgrade your furnace, think about purchasing an energy efficient furnace. Some systems can save up to $800 yearly on annual heating bills versus older furnaces. Or, if it’s not quite time for a replacement, remember to schedule a routine maintenance visit for your current equipment. An easy tune-up can help you achieve lower utility bills by making it easier for the system to operate. For more information on how you can lower your utility bills this winter, give Wolfe & Sons Inc in Columbus a call at 614-451-0846.