NATURAL GAS PRICES AT HISTORIC HIGH
Natural gas prices are at a historic high and winter bills could soar due to extraordinary market conditions nationally. SDG&E has programs and services to help mitigate these increases. Visit sdge.com/assistance or sdge.com/asistencia to find out if you qualify for debt forgiveness, one-time payments, monthly bill discounts and more. And, for more information, you can read this article on SDG&E’s NewsCenter page at sdgenews.com.
Wholesale prices for natural gas – a major source of fuel for winter home heating and electric generation – continue to surge and drive household energy bills higher nationwide. SDG&E does not mark up the cost of gas it buys for its customers so they do not make a profit from these rising market prices. SDG&E recognizes that no one wants to see their energy bills go up, especially now. Still, SDG&E also recognizes its responsibility to be transparent with its customers and help prepare them for higher energy bills this winter.
SDG&E has natural gas energy-saving tips to help you save on your bill during the cold weather.
- Block the chill: Caulk and weather-strip around drafty doors and windows. Use a door sweep, door sock or towel at the bottom of doors with a gap.
- Keep your furnace and air filters clean: Check furnace filters once a month and replace them regularly. A dirty air filter can increase your energy costs and cause problems with your equipment.
- Set your ceiling fan to run clockwise: This causes the fan to produce an updraft, forcing the hot air that rises to your ceiling down and into the rest of the room. In the summer, you can switch the fans to counterclockwise to keep the room cool.
- Schedule a no-cost SDG&E gas appliance check: Book your appointment at com/MyAccount or on SDG&E’s mobile app available in the App Store or Google Play.
- Lower your thermostat: Try lowering your thermostat a few degrees and throwing on a cozy sweater and socks. Invest in a smart thermostat. There are rebates on com/rebates.
- Lower your water heater thermostat: Lowering the thermostat on your water heater to 120°F, if possible, will save energy and avoid scalding. Check out water heater rebates on com/rebates.
- Use the “energy saver” switch on your dishwasher and set it on a low temperature setting when feasible. Think about turning off the heat drying cycle – you don’t need it! Also, run full loads only and turn the appliance off after the dishes are washed. Run it during off-peak hours before 4 p.m. or after 9 p.m.
- Try out meal prep: Take advantage of an already-warm oven by cooking multiple things at once or in big batches. Whether you have a natural gas oven or electric, you’ll save money on your bill — and have a well-stocked fridge with quick meals to boot.
- Clear blocked vents: The arrangement of the furniture and appliances in your home may block vents and restrict air flow. The natural gas heating system is likely worker harder because it’s harder to heat your home when vents are blocked.
- Keep your blinds and curtains open during the day and closed at night: During the day, keep them open to let the sunlight and warmth in. When the sun goes down, close them to keep the warm air in.
- Make sure your home is well-insulated: Without good home insulation, the hot air your natural gas heating system emits can escape through cracks, doors, windows, the attic and garage.
- Reduce the use of personal heaters: Space heaters use up a lot of energy and they’re an inefficient way to warming up large areas. If you want to heat up a small space, consider a radiant personal heater which is more energy-efficient than other models.
- Keep vents and interior doors open to promote airflow: It is commonly thought that closing vents and doors to unused rooms will reduce energy use but air will build up inside of your ducts because there will be less vents available to release that air. The increased pressure in your ducts will make it harder for your air handler to blow air into the ducts and the restricted airflow will cause efficiency problems similar to a dirty air filter. Also, if your ducts have leaks, the increased pressure in your ducts will push air out of those leaks and force your system to work longer to compensate.
Visit sdge.com/MyEnergy for more bill-saving and energy management resources.