If you feel that energy bills are taking a big chunk of change out of your pocket, you are not alone. Americans spend more than $115 billion each year on fuel and electricity for their homes. On the average, heating and cooling (space conditioning) account for about 45% of the energy a home uses. Water heating consumes about 14%, and appliances and other sources consume about 41%. Though energy use varies among homes, there are many ways to lower your energy bills.
Being more energy efficient can be as simple and inexpensive as buying and installing caulk and weatherstripping or as complicated and expensive as building a state-of-the-art, energy-efficient house. However, whatever you do to reduce energy costs will usually require the purchase of goods or services.
Investments in products or systems designed to save energy can provide a return through future savings from lower energy bills. They also reduce the impact of rising fuel prices and usually help improve the environment. However, poor choices of such products or systems can be disappointing and aggravating. Whether you are buying a new heating system or “tightening up your home,” be sure to investigate the options before investing.