How to shop for a good gas deal

All it takes is a little nip in the air to change the climate in your home — and change the cost of your heating bill. Before matters get bad, it’s probably time for a weatherizing check-in.

The cost of heating a house is a bit less expensive these days than in the recent past due to lower natural gas prices. Still, no one can afford to lose money and waste energy by letting leaky doors and windows go unattended.

Here is a D.I.Y. project — How to weatherize doors and windows. It’s very easy and inexpensive, too.

1. Measure the area of the door or window where you’ll be installing the weatherstripping.

2. Thoroughly clean and completely dry the surface. Using cushion-vinyl or spring-metal stripping purchased from a local home improvement store and cut the strips to proper length.

3. Apply the stripping to the latch-side, hinge-side and door jamb.

Perhaps the best demonstration of the technique needed can be found on Bobvila.com.

If there is a significant gap at the bottom of the door, you can also simply install a door sweep along the bottom of the door to block all of the frigid air. Measure the door and cut the metal sweep to length. Hold the strip to the door and mark the points for screws. Then, drill the strip or sweep into the door.

How to shop for a good gas deal

1. Compare prices. Go to www.psc.state.ga.us/gas/pricecard.asp and click on the appropriate month. Compare standard prices, not one-month-only teaser rates.

2. Compare track records. Go to www.psc.state.ga.us/consumer_corner/cc_gas/scorecard.asp for information on complaints against marketers.

3. Customers can switch marketers once a year with no penalty.

4. Already locked in? Ask your marketer what penalties you’ll pay for canceling a contract, to see if switching is worth it.

5. Call the marketer you choose. The marketer will do the rest.

Have you weatherized your home? How much of a difference did it make in your monthly bill? Have you shopped around for a lower natural gas rate?

Follow me on Twitter @atlbargains and on Facebook at AJC Atlanta Bargain Hunter

7 comments Add your comment

mystery poster

September 29th, 2010
11:01 am

I hate that they make us gamble on natural gas prices. Just give me good service at a reasonable price and don’t make me guess what the winter will be like.

don

September 29th, 2010
11:24 am

If you feel like you’re guessing on the prices of natural gas, well that’s just life. The price of every commodity you buy, from gasoline at the pump to milk at the grocery stores, goes up and down for a variety of reasons. You’re “gambling” everytime you enter a Kroger: should you stock up on Coca-Colas now, or will they have a better deal next week; should you buy some meat for the freezer now, or will the transportation costs of meat go down over the next couple of months; etc…

Nicolas

September 29th, 2010
12:10 pm

Ok, I am impressed.

She-She

September 29th, 2010
4:50 pm

I went to this link http://www.psc.state.ga.us/gas/pricecard.asp put in my information and it did NOT work

Jaye

September 29th, 2010
7:59 pm

I am with FireSide Natural Gas – They are constantly the most cost effective marketer in the state.

Buck

October 3rd, 2010
9:53 pm

If you can get Walton EMC then that’s the way to go. Walton’s rates are always the lowest and their customer service it top notch. Plus, Walton consistently sponsors community events and fund-raisers that help children and the needy. I don’t know what that Jaye person is talking about … Fireside? What’s that?

Dawgtards ruin this state

October 3rd, 2010
11:13 pm

let’s just burn all the felons @ thUGA to heat us this winter. All the arrests, none of the victories!