Temperatures are expected to be significantly low this week, and NIPSCO wants to ensure customers are prepared. Here are some tips to help customers stay safe and warm throughout this winter and especially as we approach the anticipated extreme cold temperatures.
Inside your home
• Space heaters can provide comfort but should be used with caution. When using, ensure they are placed on a hard, non-flammable surface away from furniture and flammable materials/products.
• Ensure appliances and heating equipment – such as a furnace, water heater and stove – are inspected and operating properly. All equipment should be used according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
• Never use a stove or oven as a heat source in your home; ovens are designed to heat food and should only be operated with the door closed.
• Don’t burn charcoal or run a generator indoors or in enclosed spaces.
• Clean your chimney and check for blockage at least once a year before using your fireplace.
Outside your home
• Remember to clear snow and ice from your intake and exhaust vents. This can help you avoid carbon monoxide buildup and operational issues with your appliances.
• Keep your meter visible at all times so it is accessible for maintenance or in an emergency.
• Don’t use a shovel or hammer to break up snow or ice on your meter. Use a broom instead.
• Be careful using a snow blower or plow near your meter. Concerned there may be a gas leak or carbon monoxide (CO) danger?
• If you smell the “rotten egg” odor or think there may be a gas leak, STOP what you are doing, LEAVE the area immediately and CALL 911 and NIPSCO 24/7 at 800-634-3524.
• If you have concerns of CO build-up or if you are experiencing CO poisoning symptoms (including headache, dizziness, nausea, vomiting, irregular breathing, or feeling ill or tired at home but fine when you’re away), get outside IMMEDIATELY and call 911.
• Remember, CO is an odorless, tasteless, non-corrosive gas created when fuels (such as gasoline, wood, natural gas, propane or oil) burn incompletely.
For more winter weather safety tips, visit nipsco.com/wintersafety.
With the colder temperatures, you can expect your energy usage to increase, especially as in home appliances have to work harder and use more energy to maintain a consistent temperature or thermostat setting indoors. NIPSCO offers several energy efficiency programs, tips, and plans to help customers save energy and money – visit nipsco.com/save.
Some energy efficiency tips include:
• Caulk the cracks – stop drafts by weather-stripping or caulking all cracks around doors and windows.
• Change furnace filters often, as dirty filters block the flow of air.
• Use storm windows and doors or sheets of clear plastic to keep in the heated air in the winter.
• Avoid blocking registers and radiators with draperies, curtains, furniture or anything else.
Struggling to pay your bill? We have payment plans and assistance programs for that too. Visit NIPSCO.com/assistance or reach out to our customer care team at 1-800-464-7726, Monday through Friday, 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. CT, to learn more.
As a reminder, severe winter storms bringing wet, heavy snow, rain, ice and high winds can cause power outages. Stay away from downed power lines. If you experience an outage, you can report it in these four ways:
• On the NIPSCO Mobile App
• Online at NIPSCO.com/out
• Text the word “Out” to 444111
• Call 1-800-464-7726