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There’s nothing worse than that first electric bill after a drastic change in the weather. Whether it’s the dog days of summer or the chilly winds of winter, it’s not unusual to note a marked change in the bill at the end of the month.

Of course, some fluctuation is to be expected and it’s perfectly normal. After all, extreme temperatures call for more usage of your HVAC system and you’re going to pay for that usage. On the other hand, if the bill really seems out of whack, something more could be wrong and you need to find out what it is.

The first thing to check is if there was a mistake on the part of the electric company. These things do happen and it is a likely source for a bill that is hundreds of dollars out of the ordinary. Make sure your meter has been read properly or that you aren’t being charged for someone else’s usage.

If you haven’t dramatically changed the amount of electricity you’re using in a month, it doesn’t seem realistic that your bill would jump so suddenly. Have someone come out to your house and make sure everything was done properly on their end before you begin troubleshooting problems with your HVAC system.

If everything is copacetic according to the electric company, you need to start taking a close look at your own habits. If you’re experiencing high bills during the winter or summer months, you might find that insulation has a lot to do with it.

If you’re heating your home but letting all that heat escape through the roof, you are naturally going to be paying dearly for it when the bill comes. Have some installers come out and fill your attic up with some good insulation to prevent this from happening. Make sure all of your windows are sealed tightly and that you don’t have hidden locations where the elements are free to invade your home.

In addition to possible problems with your HVAC system, look at the other appliances in your house. Could they be wasting money that would be better off spent elsewhere. If your appliances are over ten to fifteen years old, they could be ripe for replacement. Look for new appliances with an energy star rating so you can be assured they are the most efficient models available. Not only will you be contributing to a betterment of the environment by using fewer fossil fuels, you’ll be saving a bundle on your electric bill.

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