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Save money with energy efficient fixes at home

The skyrocketing price of oil and seasonally higher demand will likely drive your power bill to the moon this summer. But don't despair. With the right measures you can control how much you end up having to shell out.

Consider these four tips from Powerscorecard.org:

Insulate your walls and ceilings. This can save 20 percent to 30 percent of home heating bills and reduce CO2 emissions by 140 to 2,100 pounds per year.

Modernize your windows. Replacing all your ordinary windows with argon filled, double-glazed windows saves 2.4 tons of CO2 per year for homes with gas heat and 9.8 tons for electric heat.

Plant shade trees and paint your house a light color if you live in a warm climate. Reductions in energy use resulting from shade trees and appropriate painting can save up to 2.4 tons of CO2 emissions per year.

Weatherize your home or apartment, using caulk and weather stripping to plug air leaks around doors and windows. These steps can save up to 1,100 pounds of CO2 per year for a typical home.

Ask your utility company for a home energy audit. This service may be provided free or at low cost. Make sure it includes a check of your furnace and air conditioning.

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