With the arrival of winter weather here in the Big Bear Valley, Southwest Gas reminds that energy-efficiency improvements not only help save energy, but your energy dollars as well. Setting the thermostat between 66-68 degrees during the winter months is recommended as, for each degree the thermostat is lowered, two percent can be saved on each heating bill. Southwest Gas also recommends the routine replacement of air filters, caulking and weather-stripping around doors and windows to insulate against drafts, and operating dishwashers and clothes washers only when full in order to be more energy efficient. You can also open window shades, blinds and drapes to allow natural sunlight to warm your home during the daylight hours. Also, Southwest Gas points out that natural gas appliances require proper exhaust and ventilation; it is important to know the location of air supply and exhaust ducts, and keep them free of snow, ice, leaves and other debris. For more energy efficiency tips, call Southwest Gas at 1-800-OK-GAS-OK, or visit swgas.com.