(Columbia) Nov. 17, 2005 - Many of you are turning on the heat for the first time. One woman in the Midlands is already saving big bucks on her heating.
Hattie Marley is a model SCE&G customer. In the past five years, she's brought her power bill down about 25 percent, "Right now, I actually feel good about it. One hundred fifty-two dollars for the winter months. That's not all that bad."
So, how did she do it? WIS asked Ms. Marley and SCE&G for a few pointers. Robert Yanity of SCE&G tips, "The thermostat is the place to start."
SCE&G is recommending 68 degrees. Every degree lower shaves off five to ten percent on your bill.
Yanity also suggests, "Turn your fan in the opposite way so it goes counterclockwise."
The fan pushes the hot air at the top of the room down the sides. How do you know it's going the right way? Yanity says, "Just take a piece of paper. Hold it here. If it sucks it up, you know you've got the right direction for the wintertime."
In the bathroom, try taking a shower with the door open. It lets the heat and humidity filter through the house.
Hattie goes one step further to keep in the heat, "I close it off. I close the vents and the doors."
Don't heat rooms you don't use, and keep the curtains closed when the sun is down.
Hattie uses blinds, "I keep that Venetian blind closed in the wintertime."
Yanity says that's, "very smart. Any additional blockage toward the window adds another layer of insulation."
Speaking of insulation, make sure there are no gaps at doors and windows that let air in. Weatherstripping is inexpensive and easy to use.
In addition, don't put your furniture on top of a vent. It blocks the heat.
Hattie is committed to saving, "You have to do everything to save, you know."
SCE&G estimates these things and more can save you up to 30 percent.
For more information for saving on home heating, you can call Wateree Community Action at 803-773-6512 or SCE&G customer service at 800-251-7234.
Reported by Heather Brown