Take steps to avoid letting the cold air inside your house

Take steps to avoid letting the cold air inside your house

(WWBT) - The bitterly cold weather we've seen this month could to take a big toll on your next energy bill.

In addition to the programmable thermostat and weather stripping up around your windows to block drafts, there are still a few more tricks to try to keep power bills down.

While those windows are sealed up tight, make sure you aren't losing heat through your doors. If you see daylight through the bottom, you've got a problem.

There's an easy fix: Most door thresholds have four or five screws in them that let you adjust the height to close that gap. Just turn the screws counterclockwise and lift that threshold.

Leaving bathroom and kitchen fans on during the winter literally sucks the hot air right out of your house, so use those sparingly.

When you take a shower, keep the bathroom door open, and that steam and heat will spread to other rooms.

Leaving curtains and blinds open on south-facing windows will mean you get a boost from thermal heating during the day. Just close them at dusk.

If you've got ceiling fans, check for a switch at the base, and reverse the rotation. That will push the warm air that's risen down closer to you.

If you've got a fireplace, warm air is leaking out of your house, even with the flue closed.

One solution is a chimney balloon. They cost about $50, but experts say they'll save you at least $100 a year on energy costs. And if you forget it's there and light the fireplace, the balloon with automatically deflate, too.

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