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Reduce Energy Usage and Save Money on Energy Bills

Reduce Energy Usage and Save Money on Energy Bills

Columbia Gas of Maryland is committed to helping customers save money and use energy more wisely. To prevent the use of wasteful energy and to eliminate unwanted costs, Columbia is offering customers the following energy efficiency tips to help reduce heating bills while staying comfortable during the winter months.
* Set thermostats to 68 degrees or lower during the day and evening. When leaving the house for more than four hours, or before going to bed, set the thermostat back to 55 degrees.
* Replace or clean your furnace filters once a month. A dirty filter restricts airflow, making the system work a little harder to keep you warm. Having a clean filter also prolongs the life of your furnace by keeping dust and dirt from building up in the system, which can lead to expensive maintenance and/or system failure.
* Install a properly sealed duct system in your home. Seal air leaks in ducts using mastic sealant or metal tape. Never use duct tape, as it is not long-lasting. Also make sure connections at vents and registers are well-sealed where they meet the floors, walls and ceiling.
* Fill the gaps in your home this winter by caulking and weather stripping. It is important to weather strip doors and windows and caulk any holes or cracks.
* Close the damper when your fireplace is not in use. This will not only prevent warm air from escaping, but it will also prevent cold air from coming down the chimney and into the house. It is also recommended that you have your chimney cleaned and inspected once a year.
* Keep the draperies and shades on your windows that are facing the south open during the day to let the sunlight come into your home and closed at night to decrease the chill you may feel as a result of cold windows.
Columbia is also encouraging customers to plan ahead for winter heating bills and use the many payment assistance programs that are available. At the first sign there may be problems paying their natural gas bill, customers should contact Columbia Gas at 1-888-460-4332.
To learn more information on energy efficiency and to view videos demonstrating simple home weatherization opportunities, such as the installation of an electronic thermostat and weather stripping, visit
Columbia Gas of Maryland Cold Weather Minute
In an effort to help customers manage winter heating bills, Columbia Gas of Maryland is releasing a series of weekly installments throughout the heating season called "Cold Weather Minute." These tips are aimed at helping customers manage their energy bills this winter heating season by using energy wisely.
About Columbia Gas of Maryland
Columbia Gas of Maryland safely delivers clean and efficient natural gas to approximately 33,000 customers in Garrett, Allegany and Washington counties. It is one of seven energy distribution companies of NiSource Inc. (NYSE: NI). NiSource companies deliver energy to approximately 3.8 million customers located within the high-demand energy corridor stretching from the Gulf Coast through the Midwest to New England. More information about Columbia Gas of Maryland is available at

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