Conquering the cold

As Floridians, energy consumers are well-versed in how to be more energy efficient and cost effective when it comes to cooling their homes.

But heating them? Not so much. As the temperatures remain frigid through this weekend, here’s some helpful tips from Progress Energy on how to heat your home without breaking the bank long after the cold front passes.

• Change your thermostat from 74 to 70degrees F in the winter and save $65. Better yet, set your thermostat at 68 to 70 F during the day and 60 to 65 F at night. Every degree under 70 F saves 10 percent on the heating portion of your electric bill.

• Use portable heaters sparingly. Running a 1,500-watt resistance heater 24/7 costs $149 a month.

• Test your air ducts for leaks. Seal any leaky ducts, and you could save up to a third on your heating and cooling costs.

• Check your water heater. Set it to 120F instead of 140F to save up to $85 a year without spending a dime.

• If you only follow one energy-saving tip this winter, make it this one: Turn down your thermostat when you leave home for more than a few hours.

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