As temps go down, cost of heating bills goes up

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Getting a late start on winterizing, Beth McMillion, of Moline, typically makes a trip to the hardware store in October.

"When I originally started doing it, we lived in an older home and then, when we moved, I just continually keep doing it every year,” said McMillion. “We do have older windows that need to be replaced, but this is much cheaper."

"When the weather turns cold, people will start coming in saying, 'I got a drafty window," said Dave Fiebich, who, along with the crew at K&K Hardware in Bettendorf, comes to the rescue. "If you can keep the heat in your house, it's going to keep the money in your pocket."

Winterizing your home amounts to sticking weather strips and caulking into the cracks and crevices around door and window frames where heat escapes.

Typically, if you're in an older home, you’ll need to take these extra steps to ensure you’re not losing too much heat.

One trick to determine whether or not your home needs these touches includes sticking any bill through the door and if there's no resistance when you pull it out, it's time to take a trip to the hardware store.

"A screwdriver and a pair of scissors is all you need,” said Fiebich. “You can do a lot of work yourself and save yourself a lot of money."

Changing your furnace filter is a big part of it as well and now there are thermostats that allow you to control the temperature in your home from your smart phone.

Winterizing can take off 25-percent on your heating bill, according to the Department of Energy.

"You can spend as little as $5-10 and save yourself quite a bit of money, depending on the leakage around doors and windows,” he said. “You can buy weather stripping. Here, it's $2.99."

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