How Can I Reduce Home Energy Costs?

24 INEXPENSIVE IDEAS TO REDUCE YOUR HOMES ENERGY COSTS INCLUDING LINKS TO ADDITIONAL INFORMATION.

(Please see links at the bottom of this page.)
1. Check all exterior door seals: if you have an attached garage be sure to check the seals at this door as well.
2. Check all windows for air leaks.
3. Check all exterior basement walls for openings to the exterior (especially up in areas where the floor boards are over the top of the foundation and any protrusions through the foundation).
4. If you have electrical outlets mounted in the foundation walls air could be seeping in through them, you can buy foam insulators that fit the outlet and are mounted behind the plate cover.
5. Add insulation to the area above the foundation where floor joists attach to the sill and band boards.
6. Check for air leakage at electrical outlets through the interior of the house.
7. Make sure the entrance to the attic is insulated.
8. Add insulation to the attic.
9. Install inexpensive shrink plastic at the inside of windows If you have older single pane windows. You could upgrade to a newer style thermopane style windows if that expense is in the budget.
10. Having the furnace and hot water serviced. If these components are older upgrading to high energy efficient units can save a lot of money. Check with your local governmental offices to see if these are tax incentives/credits to help off set the costs.
11. Wrap the hot water tank with an insulation blanket.
12. Turn the temperature of the water heater down (typically round dial at the main control valve located at the front of the hot water tank).
13. Use a programmable thermostat to control in door temperatures.
14. Clean and service the air conditioning unit (if you have one).
15. Have kitchen appliances cleaned and serviced (also, if older consider upgrading to energy star appliances.
16. Change light bulbs to florescent bulbs to cut down on electric bill.
17. Walk the exterior of the house check for cracks and / or holes in the siding, trim boards and window frames
18. Make sure all hose spigots at not dripping.
19. Look for small leaks/drips at plumbing pipes throughout the house. Start at the main water pipe where it enters the house and follow all pipes.
20. Check for gas leaks at all gas pipe joints and appliances.
21. Unplug all major electric appliances when their not in use.
22. Incorporate solar hot water heat into your current system.
23. Have an energy audit performed by an expert.
24. Research Photovoltaic panels to reduce electric costs: you learn more about these products at:

How does the sun generate electricity?
http://greenenergyefficienthome.blogspot.com/
http://www.eere.energy.gov/