PDT Staff Writer
Much of our area is experiencing significantly colder weather for the first time this fall. Projections are calling for the 2013-2014 winter heating season to usher in colder temperatures than the previous two winters. While this may lead to homes using more natural gas this winter, Columbia Gas of Ohio says stable, decade-low natural gas prices should help keep home heating bills manageable.
Columbia’s Home Performance Solutions program uses an in-home energy audit to provide customers comprehensive feedback about their energy use and how to make their home more energy efficient, saving up to 30 percent on utility bills. Shane Cartmill, External Affairs Specialist, said the audit includes a customized plan for lowering energy usage, an appliance safety check and generous discounts on insulation, air sealing and a high-efficiency furnace. Free programmable thermostats and energy efficient shower heads are also provided in homes where they are needed.
“During November, Columbia will offer the in-home energy audit to its customers for only $25, a savings of 50 percent,” Cartmill said.
Cartmill said some Columbia customers may qualify for WarmChoice, a weatherization program that may include a home energy inspection, attic and wall insulation, air sealing, safety checks on gas appliances and gas furnace and water heater replacement where needed. WarmChoice reduces gas usage by an average of 28 percent, or up to $400 annually.
He said additional programs are available for households that qualify for payment assistance.
“Columbia encourages customers to take steps today to secure assistance, if necessary,” Cartmill said. “More information and eligibility requirements are available on the Columbia website at ColumbiaGasOhio.com.
Frank Lewis may be reached at 740-353-3101, ext. 252, or at firstname.lastname@example.org. For breaking news, follow Frank on Twitter @FrankLewisPDT.