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Simple tips to save money on energy as temperatures dip

READ MORE: Simple tips to save money on energy as temperatures dip
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It's been a rough winter for many of us trying to heat our homes. With temperatures well below normal, heating bills have gone through the roof.

We all know that simply turning down the thermostat is the best way to save money on your electric bill, but you can only cut that so far before shivering. As it turns out you really can save with a few simple tips.

You may have heard that unplugging chargers and appliances around the house can save you a bundle. According to the Berkeley National Lab, an aggressive effort can cut standby power by 30 percent, but it can be tedious and time consuming. Instead, focus on using power-saving modes on your electronics. Switching your computer to power-saving mode and shutting off your monitor when you step away from your desk can save as much as ninety bucks a year.

Also, those flat-screen TVs are energy hogs. Turning down the brightness level can save 25 percent in energy.

Electricians also say drafty doors and windows are still the biggest energy eaters.

"If you have any openings around the side of the house like where something could crawl up under there like a dog or a cat or a piece of plywood, you need to cover all those places up to keep that cold air from blowing up underneath that house," Marty Kalnen of M&P Electrical Service said. "That will save you tremendously."

Of course, unplugging all of those chargers will help. The easiest way to deal with them is to invest in a smart power strip with an on/off switch.

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Not giving the power company

Not giving the power company control over my meter. I would rather pay a little more and be able to wash, dry, cool and heat when I want to rather than when they want me to.

CP&L's Time of Use

I save over 700.00 a year by being on CP&L's time of use program. They have set times during the day when you can use your dishwasher, washing machine, dryer, etc....and you get a lower kilowatt rate. They install a new meter on your house when you join the program. They don't cut anything off etc.
It's worth checking into. I've been doing it over 10 years and have saved a bundle.