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Why MidAmerican Energy is asking customers to drop thermostats by a few degrees

Extreme cold has impacted the supply of natural gas across the nation, according to MidAmerican Energy.

Extreme cold has impacted the supply of natural gas across the nation, according to MidAmerican Energy.  To ensure all needs are met, the company is asking customers to take steps to conserve their natural gas.

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MidAmerican Energy said in a statement that they were coordinating with their customers who consume the most energy. As temperatures rise out of the sub zero and extreme cold, the issue is expected to fix itself. 

"While MidAmerican’s systems are operating as expected, the flow of natural gas to our area has been impacted due to frozen wells in the southern U.S.," said a statement from the company. 

The company says small adjustments, like lowering your thermostat by a few degrees can help make sure enough natural gas is available. 

Here are other energy-saving tips from the company that can keep your home climate-controlled, while saving you some money: 

  • Check your furnace filter. If the filter is dirty, replace it according to the furnace manufacturer’s recommendations.
  • If your home furnace has outdoor plastic intake and exhaust vent pipes, clear any snow and ice to ensure they’re not blocked.
  • Check your interior supply and return air vents, baseboards and radiators to make sure warm air can circulate indoors.
  • To help keep your utility bill down, limit the use of space heaters when possible. Instead, add a layer of clothing or an extra blanket. If you use a space heater, place it at least three feet away from other objects. Shut it off when you go to sleep or leave the area.
  • If you have window curtains, keep them closed at night to help stop cold air that leaks in through your windows. During the day, open them when it’s sunny to help warm your home. Close curtains on windows that are not in direct sunlight.
  • If you feel cold air drafting in through windows or doors, consider adding weather stripping.
  • Do not use a gas stove to heat your home and do not run a generator indoors. This can result in carbon monoxide poisoning.
  • A working carbon monoxide detector is just as important as a smoke alarm. Test both regularly. Carbon monoxide is odorless. CO poisoning can cause flu-like symptoms – even death. If you suspect CO poisoning, dial 911, seek fresh air and remain outside or elsewhere until help arrives.
  • If you smell natural gas, leave the area immediately. From another location at a safe distance, call MidAmerican Energy at 800-595-5325, and then dial 911.
  • Hire a professional to inspect and service your furnace once a year to make sure it’s working correctly, which will help keep you safe and warm during the next cold snap.