NEWS

10 Ways to Shrink Your Energy Bills

Date: Sep. 16th, 2009
Contact: Keith Pandolfi
1.  CHOKE YOUR CHIMNEY
COST: Free
BENEFITS: A tightly closed damper prevents up to 8 percent of furnace-heated air from going up the chimney
PAYBACK TIME: Immediate

2.  SEAL AIR LEAKS
COST: $30-$50 for materials
BENEFITS: Save 10 percent or more - $50 to $170 a year - on heating bills
PAYBACK TIME: Six months to one year.

3.  SHOW YOUR HEATING SYSTEM SOME LOVE
COST: $75 TO $100 for the tune-up.  A gallon of mastic duct sealant costs $25; foil-backed tape costs about $7 a roll.
BENEFITS: Furnace tune-ups save up to 10% or more on heating bills; sealing ductwork reduces air leakage by 15 percent and heating bills from 3 to 10 percent
PAYBACK TIME: One heating season

This article can be found at:  http://www.thisoldhouse.com/toh/photos/0,,20169070,00.html

4. GIVE IN TO ENERGY STAR
COST: Energy Star Fridges start at around $399 for a top-ount and $899 for a side-by-side.  Clothes washers cost $600 adn up; dishwashers start at around $230
BENEFITS: Save $80 per hear in energy costs for the fridge, $110 annually on utility costs for the clothes washer, and $4 a year on utilities for the dishwasher
PAYBACK TIME: About five years for the fridge, seven to eight years for the closthes washer, and eight years for the dishwasher

5.  MAKE YOUR ATTIC MORE CUSH
COST: About $300 for added insulation
BENEFITS: Save 30 percent on energy bills
PAYBACK TIME: Three to five years

6.  EMBRACE THE PELLET STOVE
COST: A Kozi Model 100 pellet stove costs about $2,000.  Pellets: $6 for a $40 pound bag
BENEFITS: 50 percent or more off heating bills
PAYBACK TIME: Three to five years

7.  TAKE CHEAPER SHOWERS
COST: An energy-efficient electric water heater runs around $750 installed.
BENEFITS: Save up to 20 percent on water heating bills
PAYBACK TIME: Three to four years

8. FIND SOME PERFECT STORMS
COST: $1,200 for a dozen
BENEFITS: Reduce heat loss by 25 percent or more.  Easy to install and cheaper than replacement windows.
PAYBACK TIME: Two to five years.

9.  ADDRESS THE BEAST IN THE BASEMENT (furnace)
COST:  $2,000 to $3,000
BENEFITS: Increased energy savings and a quieter more comfortable home
PAYBACK TIME: Two to five years

10.  SELL YOUR HOUSE (If you buy a certified Energy Star home)
COST: 1 to 3 percent more on construction costs
BENEFITS: The most energy efficient home on your block.
PAYBACK TIME: Immediate