Over the past year we've been taking as many steps as possible to really cut our energy usage, and since we've received notice from our power company that our rates will go up beginning in July, it's even more important that ever. Some of the things we've done were expensive (new windows) but worth it in the long run, but the most recent was so easy I don't know why it took us so long. We've installed an insulation jacket on our hot water heater. Our water heater is electric and old as dirt. Really I don't know how old it is, but it looked well used when we bought our house in 2006. It still works really well though, and truth be told a new energy efficient one is just not in the budget right now. We keep the temp set on 120 degrees F, which is the lowest setting. That has worked fine for us; we've never run out of hot water mid shower or anything. Well, the other day we went to the hardware store because Andrew had to buy a new tool for work and while we were there we saw the jackets. It's something we've talked about, but never remember to get while we were out. Old tank water heaters waste a lot of energy when the heated water sits in the tank unused. The heater is continually reheating it. This is especially bad at our house during the winter because our tank is in the basement which stays very cold during the winter time. An insulation jacket is a cheap easy fix. We went ahead on bought one for about twenty-one bucks after tax, and Andrew put it on as soon as we got home.