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How to cut energy costs during cold winter months

Yesterday was National Cut your Energy Costs day, and it landed as we’re dealing with some bitterly cold temperatures.

As you may have noticed, we are in the dead of winter right now. 

Temperatures today only reaching into the mid- 20s, wind chills even colder than that. That means people are spending more on their heating bills. 

So, when the heating bill is up, how can we save money in other ways around the house? 

“One of the most important things you can do is to replace your old appliances because older appliances are actually much less efficient than new ones," says Kimberly Palmer, a personal finance expert at NerdWallet. "So if you do have an older fridge, washer, dryer or dishwasher, it could be a really good idea to check to see if a new model would make a big difference from you."

Palmer says even if everything is up to date, there are simple improvements that can save you serious money on utility bills, and it doesn’t have to cost you anything.  

“Taking shorter showers, even just checking in on your thermostat see if you can lower it just a little bit with the colder temperatures," she says. "Maybe you don’t need it as hot as you’ve been keeping it."

She also says doing fewer loads of laundry, by simply waiting until you have a full load of laundry as opposed to partial loads will help. 

Lastly, Palmer says to give your apartment or house a visual inspection. 

“You want to give your home an energy audit," she says. "That basically just means check for any leaks. You want to see if there’s any draftiness, or if your windows or attic is leaking air because then you are just using more energy to heat up your house in the winter.” 

Experts say that just practicing efficient energy consumption methods like these can benefit your bottom line and the environment all in one. 

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