BRYAN, Tex. (KBTX) - Christmas lights and holiday decorations are starting to glow around B/CS, but that can mean more money on your utility bill. There are some ways to save this holiday season.
It's easy to see it's Christmas at Lee Freeman's house. He was hanging Christmas lights around his huge display in Bryan Tuesday.
"For the past 22 years since we moved in, I try to keep the bill down just like everybody else as much as possible," said Freeman.
One way he tries to save power is with LED bulbs. They cost more up front, but last for years longer than incandescent bulbs and run for pennies-a-day.
"I try to stick with LED lights, not only to save a little money, but you can hook up a lot more," he said.
If you're going to be decorating, inflatables are easy to set up and are really fun, but they also use a lot of energy and can add onto your electric bill.
The owner of another home in Bryan tells us his electric bill jumps by about $50 in December due to his decorations, and he has several inflatables.
Vicki Reim with Bryan Texas Utilities says preparing your house for winter is important, too. She recommends changing your air filter regularly and keeping your thermostat at 68 degrees when your heat is on.
"At night, it's always a great idea to close the blinds and the drapes because that does help the cold air from coming in and making your house colder than it really should be," said Reim, who is a BTU Division Manager of Customer Operations.
Setting your lights on a schedule is energy efficient, too.
"Timers are a great thing to use, especially with Christmas lights because it reminds you to turn them off. You don't have to worry about that with a timer," she said.
For residents like Freeman, the display is worth the work and extra money.
"It's absolutely a lot of fun. The kids enjoy it, the grandkids especially," he said.
Another tip for saving money on your heating bill is having your unit serviced each season, as well as making sure your attic has plenty of insulation.