Homeowners could save money on energy bills if they tried

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BUFFALO, N.Y. – A recent poll of more than 1,200 U.S. homeowners has found nearly all (97 percent) agree with the idea that reducing energy use at home is important to save money, yet many could still be missing out on opportunities to lower their energy bills this winter.
The poll found U.S. homeowners claim to have paid an average of $250 per month for heating and cooling over the last year, while 4 percent spent an average of more than $1,000 per month for heating and cooling.
Taking action. Many homeowners, who haven’t already taken the step within the last two years, are planning to seal air leaks (41 percent), turn down the heat (34 percent) or add insulation (20 percent) for winter.
According to Jon Eakes, one of television’s longest standing home improvement experts, a large number of homeowners might still be missing an opportunity to realize significant energy cost savings this winter, especially by sealing air leaks.
The poll found more than a quarter (29 percent) of homeowners haven’t sealed air leaks within the last two years and have no intention of doing so for winter.
“Reducing air leakage, which can cause up to 40 percent of a home’s energy loss, can produce noticeable savings for an average homeowner who spends $3,000 per year on heating and cooling,” said Eakes.
Opportunity to save. Eakes suggests there’s an opportunity for homeowners to look specifically at insulating to reduce air leaks, considering half of those polled have not added insulation within the past two years and don’t plan to for winter.
Even homeowners, who have recently purchased or who plan to purchase insulation, say they’re more likely to consider a product’s R-value rating (60 percent) when making their choice, than its ability to seal air leaks (18 percent).
“An R-value rating provides a measure for how well an insulation material resists heat from moving through the material itself,” said Eakes. “However, it tells you nothing about how well the insulation will prevent air leaks and resulting energy loss through walls and ceilings and around windows and doors.”
Not doing it. The poll found many homeowners haven’t taken energy-saving steps in the last two years and don’t plan to for winter:

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