Weatherization tips to save energy and money

EUGENE, Ore. -- After a mild transition into the fall, temperatures are starting to drop to the winter norms in the northwest.

To help homeowners keep the cold out and money in-hand, the Energy Trust of Oregon released a list of low-budget weatherization tips.

The Energy Trust said that the average Oregon home wastes up to 60% of the energy used heating their homes during the winter months. They also said that this percentage can be easily lowered by performing a few cheap fixes around the home.

Ensuring that window seals are air-tight is essential when trying to keep the cold outside. The Energy Trust said that tracing window or door frames with a candle or flame is a simple way to detect drafts coming from a closed window.

If you detect a leak, simply seal it up with a little caulk or replies the weather stripping.

Using the locks or latches on windows makes a tighter seal as well.

Curtains can serve as a barrier from the cold as well. Let the sun in during the day and keep the cold at bay by closing the drapes at night.

Another simple way to save energy is to only run the heater when you are around the house. Turn down the thermostat to 60 degrees when no one is at home or at night while sleeping.

The Energy Trust said that heating water can account for almost a third of a person's energy bill. They said that turning the temperature down to 120 degrees could save up to $50 a year.

Visit the Energy Trust of Oregon's website for more tips on saving energy (and money) during the colder months in the northwest.