Through the winter this year, the U.S. Energy Information Administration expects electricity costs to average 11.9 cents per kilowatthour, which represents an increase of just over two percent from the same time last year. On top of that, EIA estimates suggested that homeowners would spend nearly $400 on electric bills from July through August, when keeping their home cool is a priority. With the high price of energy, many homeowners are trying to find ways to reduce usage to not only go green, but to lower monthly bills. While there are several ways to do that, working with heating and AC companies to upgrade to more efficient HVAC systems might be the best option. Fortunately, before installing entirely new units, there are several steps that heat and cooling service professionals can take.