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OPINION – As October Heat Continues – FortisBC Asks Customers to Prepare for the Eventual Temperature Drop

Surrey – In advance of Energy Efficiency Day on October 5, FortisBC Inc. and FortisBC Energy Inc. is reminding customers to prepare for colder weather by monitoring their energy use and familiarizing themselves with steps they can take to conserve energy, lower greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and save money on their monthly energy bill.

“The winter heating season is when our customers’ energy bills tend to spike,” said Alicia Hearn, program manager, conservation and energy management, FortisBC. “There are many low and no-cost ways to save energy and reduce emissions that can be quick to implement yet save energy all year long.”

For most British Columbians, space heating accounts for approximately 60 per cent of the total household energy use. This typically increases in the winter months when furnaces, baseboard heating and other heating equipment are used more frequently. Heat loss is money loss, so here are some tips to keep that heat inside the home:

  • Caulking windows and weather-stripping doors to prevent drafts.
  • Sealing gaps and cracks in exterior walls to help prevent heat from getting out.
  • Installing a programmable thermostat to maintain temperatures throughout the day.
  • Turning down the heat in unused rooms.
  • Having appliances, such as furnaces, serviced by a licensed contractor to ensure they are running safely and efficiently.

FortisBC also recommends that customers monitor their home’s energy use by using their FortisBC Account Online. Through their account, customers can access a tool, My Energy Use, which by way of completing a home assessment will provide them with a customized energy-savings action plan. Income qualified customers can also apply for a free Energy Saving Kit or Energy Conservation Assistance program to help them lower their energy use.

For those looking to take the next step and invest in energy efficient upgrades, FortisBC offers rebates on insulation and high-efficiency natural gas and electric appliances and equipment so customers can continue to see energy savings year-over-year. To ensure the safest installation and that energy savings are realized, the upgrades require installation by a qualified contractor to qualify for rebate programs. FortisBC maintains a list of natural gas and electric contractors that have appropriate licenses and are familiar with FortisBC programs.

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