- Change or clean your furnace or air filters once a month, and schedule an annual furnace or boiler check-up with a licensed professional.
- Caulk and weather strip around doors and windows.
- Install rubber gaskets behind outlet and switch plates.
- Check dampers in unused fireplaces, and close them if they are open.
- Turn the water heater down to warm or low settings— never more than 120 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Wash full loads of laundry in cold water, using specially-formulated cold water detergents.
- Consider installing new, high-efficiency appliances and look for the ENERGY STAR label for efficiency ratings.
- Consider purchasing a programmable thermostat, which automatically lowers the temperature setting at night and increases the setting during the day.
Washington Gas also strongly encourages anyone who smells gas to move to a safe location and call 911 and the Washington Gas emergency line at 703-750-1400. As a reminder, we add an unpleasant odorant called mercaptan to natural gas delivered through Washington Gas' distribution system. Mercaptan gives natural gas a strong, unpleasant odor (like sulfur or rotten eggs) so you will be able to detect escaping natural gas.Understanding Your Bill Since utility bills can be difficult to navigate, Washington Gas encourages customers to contact us with questions that they have when bills arrive. In summary bills have three components:
- Gas supplied to the customer (calculated and noted in " therms" in the Purchased Gas Charge section of the bill)
- Cost of delivering the gas (labeled the Distribution Charge), and
- System charge, a fixed monthly amount that covers certain costs of providing natural gas service, such as maintenance and repair of critical infrastructure.
- The Washington Gas Budget Plan: This plan allows eligible customers to spread the cost of winter heating over the entire year. It helps to minimize the impact of typically higher seasonal bills and provides greater flexibility in managing a household budget. The Budget Plan is designed as a 12-month program, and we encourage customers to stay on it year-round to realize the potential benefits.
- Customer Choice: This is an option for customers to buy their natural gas from a licensed energy supply company other than Washington Gas. Regardless of which company sells you natural gas, Washington Gas will continue to deliver the gas safely and reliably to your home through its distribution system, address your customer needs and respond around the clock to natural gas emergencies. For more information, visit washingtongas.com, place your cursor over MY ACCOUNT and click on Customer Choice.
- The Washington Area Fuel Fund (WAFF): Founded by Washington Gas and administered by The Salvation Army, WAFF helps families who do not qualify for, or who have exhausted, government energy assistance. WAFF provides funds for all types of fuel to heat families' homes during the winter heating season. Washington Gas pays the administrative fees of the fund so that 100 percent of WAFF donations go directly to those who need assistance. For more information or to apply for assistance, contact The Salvation Army at 888-318-WAFF (9233) or visit www.waffhelp.org.Further, if a customer or someone they know is having difficulty paying a natural gas bill in the District of Columbia, they can also contact the Department of Energy & Environment (DOEE) at 311 or online to determine eligibility for the following program:
- Residential Essential Service (RES) Program: Eligible Washington, D.C. residents may qualify for a discount on a portion of the natural gas they use during the winter heating season from November 1 to April 30. To be eligible for the RES discount, residents must use natural gas as the principal source for home heating and be certified by DOEE as eligible for the federal Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP). Once certified, eligible customers may participate in the RES program for one heating season and must reapply annually.
About WGLWGL (NYSE: WGL), headquartered in Washington, D.C., is a leading source for clean, efficient and diverse energy solutions. With activities and assets across the U.S., WGL consists of Washington Gas, WGL Energy, WGL Midstream and Hampshire Gas. WGL provides options for natural gas, electricity, green power and energy services, including generation, storage, transportation, distribution, supply and efficiency. Our calling as a company is to make energy surprisingly easy for our employees, our community and all our customers. Whether you are a homeowner or renter, small business or multinational corporation, state and local or federal agency, WGL is here to provide Energy Answers. Ask Us. For more information, visit us at wgl.com.