10 winter energy saving tips from I&M

Local News

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – As the weather starts to change, Indiana Michigan Power (I&M) has shared 10 winter energy saving tips as customers prepare to turn on their heaters for the season.

“Colder temperatures can make heating systems and water heaters work harder, which ultimately will
impact a customers’ monthly energy bill,” said Heather Riggle, I&M’s Energy Efficiency Residential
Account manager. “Indiana Michigan Power has a number of energy savings ideas, rebate programs and
payment assistance programs to help customers have a safe and warm winter in their home or business.”

Winter Energy Saving Tips:

  1. Set thermostat a little lower during winter months. A customer can reduce heating costs 2-3% for
    each degree of adjustment. Changing the temperature from 72°F to 68°F could lower an energy bill by up
    to 10%.
  2. Change or clean the furnace filter once a month. Dust and dirt can quickly clog vital parts, making
    the furnace run harder and eventually break down.
  3. Have the heating system inspected regularly. A $50-$100 annual tune-up can help reduce heating
    costs by up to 5%.
  4. Vacuum registers and vents regularly. Don’t let furniture and draperies block the airflow. Inexpensive plastic deflectors can direct air under tables and chairs.
  5. Safely repair and/or apply weather stripping to air leaks in the home. Up to 25% of energy used to
    heat/cool homes escapes via air leaks. Areas to check include dropped ceilings, recessed lighting, attic
    entrances, ducts, doorframes, electrical outlets and switches, window frames and plumbing/utility access.
  6. Check the outside of a home or building for air leaks. Look for leaks at the openings for water
    spigots, air conditioner hoses, dryer vents and gas pipes. Use caulk or expanding foam to seal spaces.
  7. If drafts sneak in under exterior doors, replace the threshold. If that’s not practical, block the drafts
    with a rolled-up towel or blanket.
  8. If a home or building has electric baseboard heating, keep furniture and draperies away from
    the heaters. It’s advised to leave at least a three-inch clearance under the heating unit.
  9. If a customer has a wood-burning fireplace, have the chimney cleaned and inspected regularly.
    Burn only fully dried hardwoods to produce the most heat output.
  10. Take extreme care when using a space heater. Place it at least three feet away from anything that
    can burn, including walls, and unplug it before leaving a room.

For more winter tips and ideas, visit www.electricideas.com. I&M said there are more than 100 tips and
ideas for customers to save energy and possibly money.

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