Homes use the most energy during the winter. Use these green tips to save during those cold months. (Courtesy: Brighter Living)



Wintertime can mean colder temperatures, more guests around the house, and of course gift giving.  So here are some timely tips to help you and your family weather the winter, starting with this one:  if you have a fireplace, you can reuse old newspapers rolled up as firelogs.  Roll the newspaper around a broomstick until you get the size you want.  Then soak thoroughly in water.  Dry the log overnight and use it like ordinary wood. 

With colder temperatures and shorter days, it’s a good idea to winterize your car or truck.  Check your air filter and fluid levels, inspect your tires for tread wear and proper inflation.  Lots of winter clothing, like jackets and scarves, are now made from recycled materials.  In fact, it takes about 63 20-ounce plastic bottles to make a sweater.  So recycling not only keeps bottles out of the landfill, it can help create warm clothes. 

Your home uses the most energy during the winter.  Heating accounts for 34 percent of all annual utility usage.  So check the ductwork around your house and wrap any leaks with duct tape to keep your furnace working less.  I’m Jill Cordes.