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NJ Residents Find Staying Warm Expensive [POLL/AUDIO]

The “polar vortex” that’s kept New Jersey in the deep freeze since the beginning of the week has started to move away and temperatures are expected to moderate a bit on Wednesday, but keeping your house nice and cozy is still going to cost you a pretty penny.

Flickr User John.Karakatsanis

“When temperatures are frigid like we’ve seen for the past few days, it costs you more money, because electricity is needed to run your heating systems even if you heat with oil or natural gas,” said PSE&G spokeswoman Karen Johnson, “so you would be using more electricity than you normally would on a normal winter day.”

Johnson said you can save money during the summer, when you run your air conditioning, by setting your thermostat a little bit higher.

“So conversely in the winter, if you can lower the thermostat a little bit, you can still be comfortable,” Johnson said. “Maybe add an extra sweater or a blanket and you will be saving money as well as energy.”

JCP&L spokesman Ron Morano agrees, and also offers some additional tips.

“Safety is very important in extreme conditions like this, so if you have a space heater in your home make sure it’s in good working order,” Morano said.

Space heaters must be placed:

  • On a level, hard surface;
  • NOT on a flammable surface;
  • At least three feet away from bedding, drapes and other furniture made from flammable materials.

Those types of heaters also need to be turned off when you are not in the immediate area, or when you go to sleep.

“If you’re using a fireplace,” Morano added, “make sure you have a sturdy fireplace screen to prevent the wood from coming out of that fireplace, because that could be hazardous.”


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