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Not Leo DiCaprio? How to Cut Your Energy Bills Anyway

Lifestyles - Wed, 11/19/2014 - 9:09am
Five words or less

(NewsUSA) - If we all had Leo DiCaprio's millions, we too could spend a small fortune powering our mansions with solar panels without having to worry whether the investment would ultimately wind up cutting our energy bills or not. But we don't have Leo's millions. (Sigh.)

Which means not only won't homeowners likely also be purchasing a $3,000 energy-efficient toilet anytime soon -- what's a celeb's L.A. mansion without at least one, right? -- but that they've got to look for more realistic ways to shave their heating bills this winter.

"Many of us don't realize how much we are needlessly spending to keep warm," says Bankrate.com.

Read on for some expert tips -- including one slightly weird one.

* Adjust door thresholds. Popular Mechanics magazine uses the word "sneaky" to describe this money-saver. The theory being, if you can see daylight beneath your front door, it means the indoor air -- which, remember, you're paying to heat -- is escaping outside. "A little light in the corners is okay, but don't raise the threshold so high that it interferes with opening and closing the door."

* Use ceiling fans shrewdly. Here's one from the "Simple Little Tricks Department": "[Running fans] clockwise will trap heat inside to keep your rooms warmer during cooler months," advises U.S. News & World Report. (For those who've permanently fled New York winters for Florida, say, try to contain your desire to gloat to those shoveling snow back home long enough to recall the opposite applies in warm climes.)

* Make certain your attic is properly ventilated. Homeowners are practically begging for higher energy bills if there's not what Jason Joplin, program manager of the Center for the Advancement of Roofing Excellence, calls "a continual flow of air to protect the efficiency of your attic's insulation." Working against achieving that: the dreaded excess moisture build-up that clings to your roof's underside in winter from seemingly benign sources -- i.e., appliances, showers and cooking vapors -- before ultimately soaking the insulation when the condensed moisture falls.

Joplin's choice for heading off the problem is the Cobra Ridge Vent by GAF (www.gaf.com), North America's largest roofing manufacturer, because of its ability to "naturally promote ridge ventilation without electricity."

* One word: "plastic." Okay, here's the weird one. Jim Rogers has apparently seen so many poorly fitted windows in his time as president of the Energy Audit Institute that he advocates covering windows and sliding patio doors with clear plastic film. "Just by using that plastic," he's said, "you're going to save about 14 percent on your heating bill."

Sure, but tell that to your decorator.

Surf queen: 'Water is my office'

CNN World - Wed, 11/19/2014 - 8:56am
For the millions of us who sit at desks all day, Carissa Moore's description of her workplace might sound a little cruel.
Categories: International News

'Interstellar' sound is intentional

CNN Entertainment - Wed, 11/19/2014 - 8:40am
Having trouble hearing the dialogue in "Interstellar"? You're not the only one. Audiences have complained about the overwhelming sound, but Christopher Nolan says the audio is intentional.
Categories: Entertainment News

She was fired from '90210'

CNN Entertainment - Wed, 11/19/2014 - 8:31am
It was just a few weeks after losing her gig on the '90s teen drama that Hilary was cast in "Boys Don't Cry."
Categories: Entertainment News

Legendary comedian talks about career

CNN Entertainment - Wed, 11/19/2014 - 8:31am
Dick Cavett joins CNN to talk about his new book, "Brief Encounters."
Categories: Entertainment News

6 bodies given to police after clashes at Indian guru's ashram

CNN World - Wed, 11/19/2014 - 7:29am
The followers of an Indian guru handed over six dead bodies to police Wednesday, a day after the two sides clashed at the spiritual leader's sprawling ashram, authorities said.
Categories: International News

India isolates man with Ebola-infected semen

CNN World - Wed, 11/19/2014 - 7:19am
An Ebola survivor has been quarantined in India after his semen tested positive for the virus, health officials there have announced.
Categories: International News

Kenyans rally for woman stripped naked

CNN World - Wed, 11/19/2014 - 7:14am
Kenyans took to the streets of Nairobi on Monday to send a message to men: Stop attacking women because of the way they dress.
Categories: International News

Killer whale capture on tape

CNN World - Wed, 11/19/2014 - 7:12am
Ivan Watson speaks to a former whale hunter about how he masterminded the capture of dozens of killer whales in Iceland.
Categories: International News

Starbucks has decades of growth ahead

Business News - Wed, 11/19/2014 - 7:09am
Over the past two decades, Starbucks Corporation has become almost synonymous with coffee. Today, Starbucks operates more than 20,000 stores across dozens of countries.

Jerusalem ramps up security after 5 killed at synagogue

CNN World - Wed, 11/19/2014 - 7:08am
Jerusalem ramped up security after two Palestinian cousins wielding a gun and butcher knives attacked a synagogue during morning prayers, killing four worshipers and a policeman.
Categories: International News

Aleppo's children need protection

CNN World - Wed, 11/19/2014 - 6:54am
Children living in the Syrian city of Aleppo watch the sky. Not for signs of winter's approach, although the cold winds are already blowing, but for the barrel bombs, mortars and shellfire they know will not distinguish between military targets and their families' homes.
Categories: International News

The man of the millennium?

CNN World - Wed, 11/19/2014 - 6:50am
Let's hear it for "the man of the moment, the man of the millennium."
Categories: International News

How to respond to assertive Russia

CNN World - Wed, 11/19/2014 - 6:50am
Last week, the news broke that Russian aircraft will commence patrolling the skies over the Caribbean Sea and Gulf of Mexico. Washington reacted mildly to Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu's announcement. The U.S. State Department questioned Moscow's rationale for operating off North American coastlines while insisting that such flights "must be consistent with international law and conducted with due regard for the rights of other nations and the safety of other aircraft and of vessels."
Categories: International News

Soldier broken by war silenced

CNN - Wed, 11/19/2014 - 6:45am
Paralyzed by a sniper's bullets, Tomas Young became an outspoken opponent of the Iraq War. A year ago, he outlined his plan to end his life. He died this month.
Categories: National News

Look at me! 25 selfies of the week

CNN - Wed, 11/19/2014 - 6:43am
Categories: National News

Look at me! 25 selfies of the week

CNN World - Wed, 11/19/2014 - 6:41am
Categories: International News

Cosmetic infidelity: a new way to cheat

Health - Wed, 11/19/2014 - 6:20am
"I have five days to recover from surgery and look good before my husband gets home," she told me.
Categories: Health

Is the 'achocolypse' looming?

CNN - Wed, 11/19/2014 - 6:18am
A race to save chocolate as demand is high and supply is low. Will the shortage lead to the "achocolypse"?
Categories: National News

'Western' diet could spark TB epidemic

Health - Wed, 11/19/2014 - 6:15am
Rising obesity and diabetes worldwide could fuel a rise in tuberculosis.
Categories: Health

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