As we whether the winter storm over the next few days, CenterPoint Energy is asking its customers to conserve energy due to high heating demand.

You may think, "hey, it's colder outside, so let's crank up the heat to make sure we stay warm." That's actually counterproductive.

Being a CenterPoint Energy customer myself, I received an email from the service provider asking that Texas customers temporarily lower their thermostat settings in an effort to help conserve natural gas. How low? If possible, CenterPoint asks that you reduce your thermostat setting to 60-65 degrees through Thursday, Feb. 18.

CenterPoint says this step can help ensure that all customers continue to have gas service to stay safe and warm during the intensely cold weather.

Additional energy saving tips:

  • Lower the temperature setting on your water heater and limit your use of hot water.
  • Close shades and blinds at night to reduce heat loss through windows.

I'd like to hope you've done this already, but please remember about protecting your pipes, plants, and pets. We've got all your tips about protecting your pipes right here, and just as another friendly reminder, it's illegal to leave your pets outside in the cold in Texas.

According to Texas Legislature, an owner may not leave a dog outside and unattended by use of a restraint that unreasonably limits the dog's movement:

  • Between the hours of 10 p.m. and 6 a.m.
  •  Within 500 feet of the premises of a school
  •  In the case of extreme weather conditions, including conditions in which:
    • The actual or effective outdoor temperature is below 32 degrees Fahrenheit (THAT'S US RIGHT NOW - you know, in case you forgot).
    • A heat advisory has been issued by a local or state authority or jurisdiction; or
    • A hurricane, tropical storm, or tornado warning has been issued for the jurisdiction by the National Weather Service.

Stay safe out there, East Texas.

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