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Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Four Free Ways to Start Your Utility Diet

Reducing utility bills is just like other forms of "reducing."

You can start your energy conservation program, without having to invest a single dollar. Here are four easy--and free--money saving tips:

1. Review electric and gas bills for the last 12 months.
Start with a review of your bills and set goals for how much you want to save. It's like dieting--you need to check in first to see how much you are spending. Check you utility's online service to see if you can access your bills via the Internet. Review your usage and fees. Then set goals for reducing your costs. Start with something reasonable: cut your use by 5% over the same time last year.

2. Turn of lights, appliances, televisions, computers, and so on whenever you leave the room. Like dieting, you just need to consume less. Start by turning off the PC at night, switching off your lights and television when you really aren't using them.

3. Avoid using heaters and furnaces. Feeling chilly? Try a sweater first, or sweats, before turning on a heater. Wrap up in a cozy blanket.

4. Get a free home energy audit. Your utility may have an online audit. If it doesn't, or if it seems to be too cumbersome, remember the US government has a Home Energy Audit tool online that you can use. And it is free for anyone to use.

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