Tips for reducing heating bills during frigid cold temps

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by Elizabeth Eisele/ KMOV.com

KMOV.com

Posted on January 3, 2014 at 6:29 PM

Updated Friday, Jan 3 at 10:26 PM

(KMOV.com) -- The bitter cold snap on the way could cost St. Louis residents some cold hard cash to pay higher heating bills. Paul Guthier of Hanneke Hardware gives simple steps homeowners can take to keep the heat in the house.

Guthier said a variety of products can be used to help keep the heat inside the house and most cost as little as $2-$3. Guthier said door sweeps will cut the draft under the door and a cover for outdoor faucets will keep the heat from coming out of the spigot.

Guthier said if residents want a space heater to be sure to get the right type and size. He said a simple rule of thumb to pick the right size includes for every 10 watts for every 10 square feet in a room.

Utility heaters and fuel burning heaters are not for living spaces, said Guthier, they should instead be out in the garage or in a basement.

Guthier said the most popular fix is to cover windows and sliding doors with insulation kits.

Gentry Trotter with Heat Up St. Louis said people need to be smart when paying their heating bill.

“In the winter time, try a budget plan with Ameren or Laclede or whoever is your utility vendor,” Trotter said, “Budgets work. I use it and it works for me.”

Trotter said anyone who does fall behind on a heating bill should ask for help.

“Do not overlook that disconnection notice, pay something on that notice,” said Trotter, “Pick up the phone, tell them you are going to call Heat Up St. Louis or you are going to be working with somebody.”

Laclede Gas also offers 30 energy and money saving tips on the company website here.

To contact Heat Up St. Louis, call 314-241-7668 or visit their website heatupstlouis.org

A complete list of items Guthier suggests buying are as follows:

Water heater insulation blanket

Door sweep and threshold

Cold weather faucet cover

New furnace filter

Window and sliding door insulator kits

Easy heat cord for water pipes

Computerized thermostat

Foam tape or spray gap filler for bigger holes and cracks  

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