Energy Related Referrals and Resources
Itasca County Resources
- Itasca County Resource Center: 218-327-2941 or 1-800-422-0312
- Heat Share Itasca County: 218-326-2694
- Veteran’s Administration: 218-327-2858
Koochiching County Resources
- Koochiching County Resource Center: 218-283-7000 or 1-800-950-4630
- Heat Share Koochiching County: 218-283-3394
- Veteran’s Administration : 218-283-1179
It is always best to call your heating and energy suppliers to inquire on any programs, budget and payment plans or other incentives they offer that you could be eligible for. Call today to see what your company has available for you!
The Citizen’s Utility Board offers free, money-saving services for anyone in Minnesota. CUB is a nonprofit consumer advocate that represents the interests of residential and small business utility customers across the state. They are committed to reducing utility costs for Minnesotans by improving public policy, educating consumers about renewable energy options and offering personalized guidance on how to lower electricity, natural gas and telecommunications bills.
Resources for Seniors:
- ElderCircle: 218-999-9233
- Senior Linkage Line: 1-800-333-2433
- Access North for Independent Living: 1-800-390-3681
MN Cold Weather Rule (CWR)
Protect and Reconnect your heat from October 15-April 15. If you have a connected or metered utility such as gas or electricity your energy supplier must automatically send you an application for the MN CWR annually. The CWR is available to residential customers only. If you are having a difficult time keeping up with your winter heating bills, you are encouraged to sign up for a CWR payment plan. To sign up for the CWR payment plan, contact your gas or electric company and request a CWR payment plan. Payment plans can be established at any time during the CWR season. If the payment plan is broken, the utility is not required to offer additional arrangements. If you cannot make your CWR scheduled payment, contact your gas or electric company immediately to discuss a different payment arrangement. If you do not make your CWR payment as scheduled, your service may be shut off. For more information, contact your energy provider.
Energy Conservation Tips & Tricks That Could Help YOU Cut Energy Related Costs:
Electronics: Plug electronics into a power strip then turn the strip off when not in use to save energy costs. Invest in a “smart” power strip, which keeps important items on while shutting off others. Unplug your battery charger when not in use- many chargers draw power continuously even when the device is not plugged into the charger.
Cooking: Use microwave ovens, toasters or crock pots to warm leftovers. You will use less energy than cooking with a conventional over and keep your kitchen cooler in warmer temperatures. Keep the over door closed while cooking-the temperature can escape (and unintentionally heat up your kitchen) by as many as 25 degrees each time you open the over door.
Refrigerators: Unplug any home electronics not in use- a 2nd fridge can cost $100-$200 a year to run. Buy Energy Star appliances-they are more efficient and cost less to run. An Energy Star is 15% more efficient. Your fridge should be kept at 36-38 degrees. Your freezer should be set at 0-5 degrees.
Laundry: When doing a load of clothes make sure they are full loads. Wash clothes in cold water unless very dirty. Clean the dryer lint filter before every load to keep your dryer running efficiently. Avoid over-drying your clothes—it wastes energy, plus causes static and wrinkling. Hang clothes on a drying rack or outside (It’s free!)
Lighting: Keep light bulbs clean and turned off when not in use. CFL (compact florescent lamp) bulbs use 75% less energy and last 8-10 times longer than regular bulbs and they can knock $80 off your energy bill a year. LED (light-emitting diodes) bulbs cost more but can last 15 years. Use opaque or light colored lamp shades to allow more light in a room from less wattage bulbs.
Central Air: Don’t block air vents with drapes and furniture. Give your air compressor space to work efficiently-never stack anything against your A/C or drape anything over it.
Dishwashers: When doing a load of dishes make sure they are full loads. If your dishwasher has an economy option, use it. Air drying dishes saves energy and money.
Use curtains: Closing curtains during hot days will keep unwanted heat out.
Turn Up The Thermostat: The rule of thumb is that you can save about 3% on your cooling bill for every degree that you increase your thermostat full time. To counteract the slightly warmer temps, engage ceiling fans to cool people down.