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Saving money is never as easy. You can control increases in home utility bills if you follow some simple steps.

One way to lower your utility bills is to conduct a simple do-it-yourself energy assessment to determine your home’s energy use. The U.S. Department of Energy’s website lists a great formula to calculate energy consumption for specific appliances and the annual costs to operate them.

For a more detailed assessment, an energy auditor can take a thermal image of your home to show areas where warm air is escaping and recommend cost-effective solutions to improve your energy usage.

Cloverleaf Insurance Agency 1-800-530-5822  and the U.S. Department of Energy have some more easy tips to help lower your home utility bills:

  1. Wash your clothes in cold or warm water instead of hot.

  2. Do full loads of laundry and dishes to avoid wasting energy and water.

  3. Clean the dryer lint filter after every load of laundry to improve air circulation and speed up drying.

  4. Take showers instead of baths and install a low-flow shower head.

  5. Fix leaky faucets around the house. Consider water-saving faucet attachments.

  6. Install energy-efficient light bulbs which can be found in most hardware and home improvement stores.

  7. Bring more natural light into your home through windows and skylights, reducing the need for artificial lighting during the day.

  8. Turn off appliances or lights not in use.

  9. Unplug block-type chargers – like those for a cell phone or laptop – when not in use. Even when you are not charging your device, the charger is still consuming energy if it is plugged in.

  10. Turn desktop computers off when not in use for extended periods of time. PCs also produce heat; by keeping yours powered off more often, you can save on cooling costs.

Plus, using more electricity during “off-peak” hours can save you money because it can cost more to operate appliances during high usage times.

For more information on how to cut utility costs, visit the U.S. Department of Energy’s website, www.energysavers.gov

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