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Virginia Energy Sense offers tips on saving on your energy bill this winter

Grigsby checking the crawl space of a home while performing an audit.
Grigsby checking the crawl space of a home while performing an audit.(wwbt)
Published: Jan. 7, 2022 at 6:15 PM EST
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HENRICO, Va. (WWBT) - For many Virginians, their new year’s resolution is to save more money, but that can be difficult to do during the winter, especially when heating your home.

If you’re hesitant about touching your thermostat, Virginia Energy Sense says you can still save money on your electric bill while staying warm.

With Virginia Energy Sense, Ford Carson says some simple steps you can take are weather stripping gaps in doors, unplugging unused appliances, or switching light bulbs over to energy-efficient LED lights.

If you don’t know what else you can do, Carson recommends a home energy audit to see where the heat in your home could be escaping from.

“To see what components of your house you can make more energy-efficient and that can include anything from foam gaskets as we mentioned, to air ducts, to crawl space,” Carson said. “You’re just taking a looking room by room to see if there’s anything you can do to save the energy that you’re already pumping into your home.”

Andrew Grigsby has been crawling around homes over the last 20 years, performing home audits for the non-profit Viridiant.

“In a lot of houses, we start an audit with the attic. It’s kind of no secret cold winter’s day you need a hat on your head, same thing for a home,” Grigsby said.

Through a quick audit, Grigsby says many homes in Central Virginia run through similar energy loss issues that can be fixed for a few bucks.

“What this attic door need is some weather stripping right here so that there’s no air leakage through this opening,” Grigsby said. “This is a door to the outside; we wanna make sure it’s airtight and insulated just like your front door.”

Grigsby says some other simple steps you can take are to change your air filter once a month, make sure air ducts are not leaking, and insulate copper pipes below your home.

After an audit, Grigsby makes a list of changes a homeowner can take on at any time. Its steps Henrico homeowner Jenner Schutt says she took last year and has seen a difference in her energy bill.

“On average, I would say maybe 10 to 20 percent with the changes,” Schutt said. “I would have to do my math, but overall I can see a reduction in cost.”

If you’re interested in a home energy audit, click here.

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