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Simple Steps Can Help Save Cold, Hard Cash this Winter

Now is the time to implement energy-saving measures

Freezing temperatures and the first frost on the ground signal an end to milder fall days across northern Mississippi and an increased need to stay warm. That’s why Clarksdale Public Utilities is launching its Simple Steps initiative aimed at helping customers save money on heating expenses through energy-saving measures.

According to the U.S. Department of Energy, heating systems use more energy and cost more money than any other system in the home — making up nearly 30% of the typical utility bill. But that increase can be offset by following recommended thermostat settings, sealing cracks around doors and windows, switching the direction of your ceiling fans and more.

“No matter the season, extreme temperatures can result in greater energy use in an effort to stay comfortable,” said CPU General Manager Curtis D. Boschert. “But now is a good time to remind yourself that you can keep costs as low as possible this winter, especially if you take a few simple and inexpensive steps before the heater kicks on full-time.”

For example, for every degree that customers raise the thermostat above 68, they are adding about 3% to their bill. So, cranking it up to a toasty 76 degrees translates to an extra 24% out of their wallet. Other steps include:

  • Schedule a professional heating system checkup to maximize efficiency.
  • Check air and furnace filters every 30 days or as required by the type of filter. Clean or replace them as needed.
  • Do not block heat registers or air returns with curtains or furniture.
  • Keep all doors and windows closed when the heat is on.
  • Open drapes for warm sunlight during the day. Close them at night to reduce heat loss.
  • Conserve hot water. Wrap your electric water heater with a water heater blanket and set the thermostat to 120 degrees or medium.
  • Close the damper on fireplaces when not in use.
  • When you change your light bulbs, replace them with energy-efficient models that use less power and last longer.
  • Decrease the thermostat to 55 degrees if away from home for several days.

More tips, videos and guides to help put these ideas to work can be found at the DOE’s Energy Saver website.

“We also encourage you to sign up for our easy and convenient payment options to help better manage your bills,” added Boschert. “These flexible choices are designed to provide more control over your utility account, billing cycle and household budget.”

Further assistance is available for qualified customers through the federal Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program. For more information or to apply, visit the Mississippi Department of Human Services website or contact Coahoma Opportunities at 662-624-4887.

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.

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For more than 120 years, Clarksdale Public Utilities has supplied utility services that support our community’s growth, vibrance and quality of life. But we are more than a provider of reliable and affordable electric, water and wastewater services — we are your family, friends and neighbors. We are people who care. We are CPU.

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