Are you just throwing your $$ out the window by spending to much on heating and cooling your home? Most people do because they do not know the simple secrets on how to save big bucks on their utility bills. I have a 3000sqft home and we spend very little money compared to other similar size houses in our neighborhood. Below is what we have spent in the last 10 months on gas and electric, keep in mind I live in Austin, TX:
On average our combined utility bill is $127.00 I think that is very efficient. So how do I do it? Get a programmable thermostat from home depot for about $30 bucks or so. I have the one shown in the previous link and it is easy to install and use, but for all you macho guys who don’t read directions, make sure you read this or it will kick your ass. Once you install it properly make sure you actually use it for its intended purpose, program it. It has a guide in there on how you should program it, but I suggest you throw that away. Here is how I programmed it. In the summer set it for around 81-82 degrees when you are not home, if you have pets then keep the fan on. Set it to start cooling the house about 15 minuets before you get home from work. I keep our house at about 76-77 in the summer and believe me that is comfortable. In the winter we keep the house at about 68-70 when we are home and 62-64 when we are not.
If you get direct sun light into your house invest in some black-out curtains or something similar. The less sunlight you get in the house in the summer the cooler the house stays, yes thats common sense. We keep the house completely shaded during the day when we are out. It makes a huge difference. Vice Versa in the winter, you might want to keep your curtains open to let the sunlight in.
Here are other tips that are also important to implement.