Ways to cut down costs on your energy bill

RENO, Nev. (KOLO) - Winter is around the corner and local homeowners are searching for easy ways to keep costs low and cash in their pockets. October is Energy Awareness Month and NV Energy says there are multiple ways to cut down your energy bill for free year round.

Officials with the company recommend you get a contractor to come out and maintenance your heating system every couple months to make sure it's working properly. They also recommend changing your air filters every two months.

Simple steps you can do on your own include:
-Turning off the lights when you leave a room
-Open the blinds to let natural sunlight in to warm the home
-Consider installing double or triple-pane windows for extra insulation
-Check for air leaks around windows, doors and pipes
-Pay attention to your thermostat, keeping it set at 68 degrees while you're home and 58 degrees while you're away or sleeping
-Install a programmable thermostat
-Check your duct systems to make sure air is circulating properly
-Make sure the attic is insulated well as heat rises
-Keep all registers in the home open to evenly distribute air

"You don't have to spend any more than you have to spend," Chad Piekarz, Program Manager with NV Energy said, "All these things are very simple, and they are actually just kind of bottom line things that you would do. Much like servicing the furnace, it's like servicing your car."

These simple money-saving steps are not solely for residential homes or properties.

"We also recommend any commercial properties, anybody looking to do improvements on their building, lighting, we'll do any improvements like replacing major equipment, we also offer commercial incentives as well," Piekarz said.

Another way to help save money to your energy bill is through the Powershift Program with NV Energy.

The program is available for all NV Energy customers all year. A technician will come do a free home energy assessment and can also install an NV Energy Smart Thermostat for free, a savings of around $500. The smart thermostat allows homeowners to adjust a home's temperature from an application on a smartphone.

If a technician does the home energy assessment and installs a smart thermostat at the same time, they will also change the home's air filters and install LED lights also for free for NV Energy customers.

To apply and make an appointment for the Powershift Program, click here.

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