January 2020 Residential Messaging from SDG&E®


There are many lifestyle changes we can make without breaking the bank. Here are some no-cost and low-cost ideas to help you save energy and money while staying comfortable during the colder winter months.

  1. Take advantage of heat from the sun
    • Open curtains on your south-facing windows during the day to allow sunlight to naturally heat your home.
    • Close the curtains at night to reduce the chill you may feel from cold windows.
  2. Cover drafty windows
    • Use a heavy-duty, clear plastic sheet on a frame or tape clear plastic film to the inside of your window frames during the cold winter months. Make sure the plastic is sealed tightly to the frame to help reduce infiltration.
    • Install tight-fitting, insulating drapes or shades on windows that feel drafty.
    • Find out about other window treatments and coverings that can improve energy efficiency.
  3. Adjust the temperature
    • When you are asleep or out of the house, turn your thermostat back 10° to 15° for eight hours and save around 10% a year on your heating and cooling bills. A smart or programmable thermostat can make it easy to set back your temperature. 
    • If you have a heat pump, maintain a moderate setting or use a programmable thermostat specially designed for use with heat pumps.
  4. Find and seal leaks
    • Seal the air leaks around utility cut-throughs for pipes (“plumbing penetrations”), gaps around chimneys and recessed lights in insulated ceilings, and unfinished spaces behind cupboards and closets.
    • Add caulk or weather-stripping to seal air leaks around leaky doors and windows.
  5. Maintain your heating systems
    • Schedule service for your heating system.
    • Furnaces and heat pumps: Replace your filter once a month or as needed. Find out more about maintaining furnaces or boilers and heat pumps.
    • Wood- and Pellet-Burning Heaters: Clean the flue vent regularly and clean the inside of the appliance with a wire brush periodically to ensure that your home is heated efficiently. Find other maintenance recommendations for wood-and pellet-burning appliances.
  6. Reduce heat loss from the fireplace
    • Keep your fireplace damper closed unless a fire is burning. Keeping the damper open is like keeping a window wide open during the winter; it allows warm air to go right up the chimney.
    • When you use the fireplace, reduce heat loss by opening dampers in the bottom of the firebox (if provided) or open the nearest window slightly – around 1 inch – and close doors leading into the room. Lower the thermostat setting to between 50° and 55°F.
    • If you never use your fireplace, plug and seal the chimney flue.
    • If you do use the fireplace, install tempered glass doors and a heat-air exchange system that blows warmed air back into the room.
    • Check the seal on the fireplace flue damper and make it as snug as possible.
    • Purchase grates made of C-shaped metal tubes to draw cool room air into the fireplace and circulate warm air back into the room.
    • Add caulking around the fireplace hearth. Find out more techniques to improve your fireplace or wood-burning appliance’s efficiency. Learn tips for safe and efficient fireplace installation and wood burning.

For more tips on how to save energy this winter, visit sdge.com/winter.

Source: https://www.energy.gov/energysaver/fall-and-winter-energy-saving-tips


Keep safety and energy savings on tap year-round with these simple tips for your home water heater.

  1. Turn down the temperature of your water heater to the warm setting (120°F). You’ll not only save energy, you’ll avoid scalding your hands.
  2. Set the water heater thermostat to 120°F or less to save energy and reduce the risk of scalding. (If your dishwasher lacks a booster heater, a setting of 140°F may be needed.)
  3. Hand-test water temperature before bathing or showering. A child’s bath water generally should be no hotter than 100°F.
  4. Securely install water heater restraints to wall studs to prevent movement or toppling during an earthquake, as required by state law.
  5. Keep flammable products away from the water heater and vent system to help prevent fire hazards.
  6. Keep the area around the water heater clean and well-ventilated.
  7. Fix leaky faucets to prevent heated water from dripping away.
  8. Use cold water to wash clothes and rinse dishes when possible.
  9. Run full loads in the clothes washer and dishwasher.
  10. Install low-flow devices on faucets and showerheads — less water, less heating.

Find other strategies for energy-efficient water heating.


If you want to improve your home’s energy efficiency but cash flow is a problem, the statewide Residential Energy Efficiency Loan (REEL) program may be able to help. Participating REEL lenders offer loans with favorable rates and terms to finance eligible energy-efficiency measures. Examples include: heating, ventilating and air-conditioning (HVAC) equipment and repairs; water heaters; insulation for walls, floors, attics and ducts; sealing air leaks; duct sealing; appliances; pool pumps; smart thermostats; windows; and light-emitting diodes (LEDs). REEL gives you the flexibility to use up to 30% of the financing to complete additional tasks, such as general remodeling and water-efficiency projects. For details, please visit GoGreenFinancing.com/residential.


Si desea mejorar la eficiencia energética de su hogar pero el flujo de efectivo es un problema, el programa de Préstamo de Eficiencia Energética Residencial (REEL, por sus siglas en inglés) en todo el estado puede ser capaz de ayudar. Los prestamistas que participan en REEL ofrecen préstamos con tasas y condiciones favorables para financiar medidas elegibles de eficiencia energética. Algunos ejemplos son: equipos y reparaciones de calefacción, ventilación y aire acondicionado (HVAC, por sus siglas en inglés); calentadores de agua; aislamiento para paredes, pisos, áticos y conductos; sellamiento de fugas de aire; sellado de conductos; electrodomésticos; bombas de piscina; termostatos inteligentes; ventanas; y diodos luminosos (LED, por sus siglas en inglés). REEL le da la flexibilidad de utilizar hasta el 30% de la financiación para completar tareas adicionales, como proyectos de remodelación en general y eficiencia hídrica. Para obtener más información, visite GoGreenFinancing.com/residential.


SDG&E has several assistance programs to help lower your monthly energy bill while keeping your home comfortable.   

California Alternate Rates for Energy (CARE) Program: Save 30% or more every month on your bill. Eligibility is based on participation in certain public assistance programs, or household income and how many people live in your home. Visit sdge.com/CARE to learn more. 

Family Electric Rate Assistance (FERA) Program: If you don’t meet the requirements for CARE, you may qualify for FERA. You could receive an 18 percent discount on your energy bill. FERA is only open to households with three or more people. Visit sdge.com/FERA to learn more. 

Medical Baseline Allowance Program: If you or someone in your household has a qualifying medical condition or needs certain medical equipment in your home, you may be eligible for electricity or natural gas at a lower rate. To learn more or apply, visit sdge.com/MedicalBaseline.

Energy Savings Assistance (ESA) Program: You may qualify to receive no-cost energy-saving improvements for your home, such as new home appliances, energy-efficient lighting, insulation and more. To see if you qualify, visit sdge.com/ESAP

For details about SDG&E’s customer assistance programs, visit sdge.com/Assistance. If you have additional questions, please email billdiscount@sdge.com or call 1-800-411-7343.   


SDG&E tiene varios programas de asistencia para ayudarlo a reducir su factura mensual de energía mientras mantiene su hogar cómodo.

Programa de Tarifas Alternativas de Energía de California (CARE): Ahorre 30% o más cada mes en su factura. La elegibilidad se basa en la participación en ciertos programas de asistencia pública o en los ingresos del hogar y cuántas personas viven en su hogar. Visite sdge.com/CARE para obtener más información.

Programa de Asistencia de Tarifa Eléctrica Familiar (FERA): Si no cumple con los requisitos de CARE, puede calificar para FERA. Podría recibir un descuento del 18 por ciento en su factura de energía. FERA solo está abierto a hogares con tres o más personas. Visite sdge.com/FERA para obtener más información.

Programa de Subsidio de Referencia Médica: Si usted o alguien en su hogar tiene una afección médica que califica o necesita cierto equipo médico en su hogar, puede ser elegible para electricidad o gas natural a una tarifa más baja. Para obtener más información o presentar una solicitud, visite sdge.com/MedicalBaseline.

Programa de Asistencia para el Ahorro de Energía (ESA): Puede calificar para recibir mejoras de ahorro de energía sin costo para su hogar, como electrodomésticos nuevos, iluminación de bajo consumo, aislamiento y más. Para ver si califica, visite sdge.com/ESAP.

Para obtener detalles sobre los programas de asistencia al cliente de SDG&E, visite sdge.com/Assistance. Si tiene preguntas adicionales, envíe un correo electrónico a billdiscount@sdge.com o llame al 1-800-411-7343.

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