New Gas Usage Records Set Again During Cold Snap

Con Edison Repeats Conservation/Safety Tips

Con Edison customers set several records for natural gas usage during the weekend cold, prompting the company to remind people to save energy and money, and to call if they suspect a gas leak.

Con Edison customers in New York City and Westchester County used 1.42 million dekatherms of gas on Saturday, beating the record of 1.37 million dekatherms set just the day before.

Customers also set six new hourly records for gas demand on Saturday. Usage topped out at 62,750 dekatherms in the hour ending at 7 p.m., making that the new hourly record.

These are amounts of gas sent to distribution customers and do not include the gas sent to electric generating plants. It was the second straight weekend that Con Edison customers set various records for natural gas usage.

If you smell gas, treat it as an emergency. Do not turn a light switch on or off, turn on a flashlight, or even touch your phone inside the house. Go outside immediately and call 911 or 1-800-75-CONED (1-800-752-6633).

Con Edison strongly advises customers to clear snow and ice away from outdoor gas meters or appliance vents to avoid damage to equipment or blockages that could create carbon monoxide conditions in their homes.

Also, never use a gas oven or range, or charcoal grill to heat a room. This causes a potentially fatal carbon monoxide danger.

The cold blast also led to a new record for demand for electricity on a winter weekend. Con Edison distributed 360,858 megawatt hours of power on Saturday and Sunday.

And last Friday the company set a record for electrical sendout for a single winter day. Customers used 186,583 megawatt hours.

Con Edison reminds its customers to conserve energy by following the energy company on Twitter or Facebook for energy savings tips. The company provides customers with rebates and incentives for upgrading their heating and cooling equipment, go to: coned.com/hvacrebate to learn more.

Con Edison suggests these steps to save on energy during the winter months:

  • Use a programmable thermostat, and/or turn your thermostat down when you are not at home. Set the thermostat while you are home to a reasonable temperature that meets your comfort and health needs.
  • Use weather-stripping in all attic stairwells and access openings. Stop cold air infiltration from electric outlets by using draft blockers.
  • Open curtains and/or shades of east, south and west-facing windows on sunny winter days to let the sun help you heat your home. Close them at night. Keep draperies closed all day on north-facing windows.
  • Close hot air vents or radiators in unused rooms. Then, close the doors to those rooms securely, using draft guards at the door bottoms if necessary. CAUTION: If you have a radiator-hot water system, be sure the unused room does not get so cold as the temperature falls below freezing.
  • Check all places where heat enters the room. Make sure the draperies and furniture do not block the flow of heat.
  • Check the filters on your forced-air furnace every month during the heating season. Replace as necessary.

Customers can also save money on heating by using these tips:

  • Have a contractor clean and inspect your heating system.
  • Inspect and clean air ducts and heating vents to ensure adequate air flow and eliminate any loss of heated air.
  • Insulate hot-water pipes and warm-air ducts that pass through unheated areas.
  • Clean or replace filters for your hot-air furnace and heat-pump.
  • Head over to Con Edison’s Marketplace where you can shop for energy-saving appliances and products.

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