Local pro explains how to keep heating costs low

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KINGSTON, LUZERNE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — It will likely cost more to heat your home this year as prices for heating oil and natural gas are rising significantly.

Higher heating bills affect everyone, but especially people with a low or fixed income. Eyewitness News stopped by a local heating/air conditioning company to get some tips on how you can save.

With cold weather on the horizon, the cost of heating oil and natural gas are going up. The U.S Energy Information Administration predicts that, compared to last winter, heating oil prices will rise by 43 percent, natural gas by 30 percent, and electricity by six percent.

The price of home heating oil this time last year was $2.12 per gallon. Now it’s $3.40. So how can you save?

Rob Hebda a service manager at Newco Heating and Air Conditioning in Kingston says when heating oil prices go up, it’s all about efficiency.

“You want your furnace cleaned and serviced and ready to go to get high efficiency out of it,” said Hebda.

Hebda also says don’t touch that thermostat.

“Leave your thermostat at one temperature Say if you’re going to set it at 70, leave it all day for 70 degrees. It takes twice as much energy to heat your house So let’s just leave it at 70 all winter long,” explained Hebda.

There are things you can do yourself. Start by checking the filters. When they’re dirty, an appliance has to work harder, so clean and replace them regularly.

Next, check your doors and windows. Don’t let the warm air you’re paying for leak outside. But professional maintenance is best at least once a year

“Call your local contractor and get cleanings done for your furnace oil gas propane heating pump. Check your air filters. Have a trained mechanic come over and check over your system, check your chimney,” said Hebda.

If a technician suggests you need to upgrade your system Hebda says shop around and get estimates.

For even more savings, check with your utility company. It might offer rebates and incentives to make some energy upgrades.

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