With cooler days and cold nights... more and more people are starting to turn up the thermostat.
And if you use oil or gas...expect a dramatic jump in your heating bill this winter.
It's a sure sign of fall and colder temperatures... when oil trucks start making their rounds filling up area tanks.
But it's a sign of the times... that energy costs this fall are higher than ever.
Industry experts say that translates to roughly 25-cents more a gallon for consumers. Propane and natural gas have also seen substantial price jumps.
The energy department says tight supplies have driven up prices accordingly. Natural Gas prices up 11.2 percent... Propane up 17.3 percent. And home heating oil prices up a whopping 28.8 percent... thanks to spiralling crude oil prices.
Those who feel the affects the most are low-income families. Analysts say on average they'll pay 4-hundred more this winter to heat their home with oil. And Federal assistance programs aren't keeping pace.
David Fox with the Campaign for Home Energy Assistance says
"Nationwide, we're looking at about thirty million households that are eligible for assistance." "Unfortuanately, says Fox," the program is not reaching eighty-four percent of those households."
There are things you can do help curb you heating bill. First make sure your system is serviced and operating efficiently. Change your air filters and try to seal drafty areas of your home. Experts say that's your best bet because energy prices dropping dramatically in the near future is very unlikely.
Turning down the thermostat... and putting a sweater on can also have a dramatic affect.