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      Simple tricks could save you hundreds of $$$

      If you're looking to save money on your homes energy bill every month, Ameren Illinois has a program for you.

      It's a free home energy audit could save you hundreds of dollars and improve your homes energy efficiency not just over a few months, but a few years.

      Skip Stevens has been doing this kind of work on homes to improve their energy efficiency for several years. He says it starts with an energy audit and continues with a blower door test and finally from there the actual work begins to improve a homes energy efficiency.

      "And we set up the blower door and the blower door is going to indicate where those problems are at. Once the blower door is in place and running, we go around and with a thermal imaging camera and we can actually pinpoint where the problems are in the house ," said Stevens.

      Before work begins on a home there's an initial audit and that's when a customer of Ameren Illinois makes contact with Act On Energy. From there a energy consultant will actually visit your house and take a survey as to what kind of improvements and investments can be made to lower a person's energy usage and their energy monthly bill. Part of the program even has the use of an infrared camera to see where air is getting into the home.

      "The program has always been available to Ameren customers, but in the last three or four months we're put an energy advisor in this area full time and so we're definitely saturating this area and market with mailers and stuffers in the statements to let people know that this service is available ," said Paul Englert who is with Home Energy Performance, a part of Act On Energy.

      The long term goal of the program is to make the house comfortable for the occupants. They want to make it cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter. Besides the initial audit and testing, the consultant will also make recommendations as to how a homeowner can lower their monthly bill through insulation, duct sealing and other energy saving measures.

      If you'd like to get more details on the energy efficient programs that are offered, you can either access their website at www.actonenergy.com or you can call 866-838-6918.