Manage cold-weather energy costs by following a few simple strategies
Even though a good part of winter is behind us, late winter and early spring in Mississippi can bring bone-chilling temperatures. Clarksdale Public Utilities wants to help customers manage heating costs by sharing tips to save energy while staying safe and cozy indoors.
“Even though bills typically increase during extreme weather due to usage, there are steps customers can take to minimize the impact on their budgets,” said Curtis D. Boschert, CPU general manager. “Most of these tips are free or low-cost to implement and can make a noticeable difference on winter energy costs.”
To increase energy efficiency and lower heating costs during cold weather:
• Use a programmable thermostat with a setting as low as is comfortable when you are at home during waking hours and reducing the heat by only a few degrees when you’re sleeping or out of the house.
• Add caulk or weather stripping to seal air leaks around doors and windows.
• Keep vents open and uncluttered to maximize airflow efficiency.
• Replace furnace or heat pump filters once a month or as needed.
• Keep fireplace dampers closed when not in use.
• Install energy-efficient light bulbs that use less power and last longer.
• Turn down your water heater temperature to the warm setting (120°F).
• Open blinds to take advantage of solar energy and close at night to retain heat.
• Unplug electronics when away from home. Some appliances and devices use energy even when turned off.
CPU also reminds customers to minimize heating-related hazards. If you use a fireplace, make sure the damper or flue is open before starting a fire and keep a fire extinguisher handy. Never use gasoline, kerosene or charcoal starter. Start fires only with dry kindling, newspaper or pinecones and make sure fires are completely out before going to bed or leaving the house.
Space heaters should be placed only on flat, level surfaces at least three feet from anything flammable, including papers, clothing and rugs. Never leave space heaters unattended, and don’t let children or pets play too close to a space heater. Plug electric heaters directly into wall outlets instead of using extension cords or power strips, which can overheat and cause fires.
Customers may visit the U.S. Department of Energy’s website at www.energy.gov and select the “Save Energy, Save Money” link for more information about improving the energy-efficiency of their homes.
Clarksdale Public Utilities is a municipally owned utility serving approximately 6,800 homes and businesses in Clarksdale, Mississippi. Its mission is to safely provide sustainable electric, water and wastewater services in a reliable and courteous manner by well-trained team members, committed to top quality, efficient operations, competitive rates and the vitality of the community.
Learn more at http://cdpu.net.