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Published December 10, 2013, 10:11 PM

Tips to lower your energy bill during the cold weather

Fargo, ND (WDAY TV) - Now that cold weather is here, some people are probably starting to see their energy bills going up.

By: Becky Parker, WDAY

Fargo, ND (WDAY TV) - Now that cold weather is here, some people are probably starting to see their energy bills going up.

If you want to see that number go back down, we have some tips to make your home more efficient.

For every degree you turn down your thermostat, you slash about three-percent off of your energy bill, so if you pay eight hundred dollars throughout the winter, you can save $50 just turning it down two degrees.

And one simple way to keep the cold air out is to lock your windows rather than just shutting them, because that will make them seal completely.

When it's this cold outside, your home is your refuge from the icy chill of winter.

But keeping it warm can be expensive.

Morgan Naslund says his electric furnace was costing so much they stopped using it, living primarily in the newer part of their home, which runs on gas.

Morgan Naslund/Homeowner: "We only used the thing twice. We got the bill and about died, one time it was about $800."

There are some simple steps you can take to make your home more energy efficient.

First of all, turn down the thermostat, especially when you're out or at night when you're all bundled up anyway.

Stephanie Villella/Cass County Electric Co-op: "Sealing your home is a big thing. Maybe get a storm door."

Seal drafty windows with heavy-duty plastic wrap taped to the inside of your window frames.

And make sure to keep the damper on your fireplace shut when you aren't using it.

Besides keeping cold air out - you can also find creative ways to bring heat in.

Villella: "Leave the blinds open during the day to use the heat from the sun."

If you want to make a bigger change, you might take a page from Naslund's book.

He expects his bill will drop drastically after he installed a new gas furnace this week.

Naslund: "We wanted to be able to use our whole house."

You can find some of these tips and many more on energy.gov.

Cass County Electric also does house visits where they will go through your home and make suggestions of how you can save energy.

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