TXU Energy offers energy-saving tips which can help save money this holiday season.

One key step is to set thermostats to about 70 degrees or lower during the winter months when away from the home for more than a few hours. In addition, by installing programmable thermostats, residents can adjust their home’s temperature automatically without sacrificing comfort, according to a press release.

Some cost-saving tips include keeping closed doors to a minimum and cleaning furnaces on a monthly basis.

“Don’t turn off your heater than turn it back on. It makes your heater work twice as hard. The number one thing that customers need to realize is 20 percent goes to lighting. The easiest thing you can do is replace your lightbulbs with energy efficient lights,” said Sophia Stoller, TXU Energy spokesperson.

Another tip Stoller added is caulking windows throughout the home.

“It stops the cold from coming in and the hot air from coming out,” she said.

Sealing up air leaks with caulking and weather stripping and installing adequate insulation in walls and the attic are some of the most cost effective savings measures you can do in your home.

Install storm or thermal windows and doors or double-paned glass. A less expensive alternative is plastic sheeting, which can be temporarily fastened over doors and windows to prevent drafts and retain heat.

Keep all doors shut and try to minimize the number of times doors to the outside are opened and closed. Review the energy guide labels when buying or replacing larger appliances such as refrigerators, freezers, washers and dryers. If you are thinking about purchasing a new TV or VCR, look for ENERGY STAR® models. ENERGY STAR® TVs and VCRs use less energy and save money.

Unplug the video games and turn off the television. Play board games or read your favorite holiday story with the kids instead.

Set water heater temperatures at 120 degrees. A family of four, each showering for five minutes a day, uses 700 gallons of water each week. By lowering the thermostat on the water heater to 120 degrees, families can cut water heating bills without sacrificing comfort.

Close outside vents (where applicable), and close dampers on unused fireplaces.

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