The health of our community is a priority during the COVID-19 emergency. To keep you and our employees safe, lobbies are closed at our Payment Centers and at Johns Prairie. PUD 3 has suspended disconnections, disconnect notices and late fees. Be mindful of the energy use at your home and its effect on your bill. If you have any questions or concerns, call our customer service representatives for help and guidance. To do business with us: Use our SmartHub app or my.pud3.org to contact us, report an outage, pay your bill, or manage your account. Pay your bill using the buttons on your phone at 1-844-255-3683. Use PUD 3’s convenient bill drop boxes. Use PUD 3's payment kiosk at 310 W Cota St. office to make cash, check, or card payments on your account, 24/7. Call us at (360) 426-8255 for regular business. Review the Assistance Programs available on our website for resources. Learn more by visiting our COVID-19 page.

En repuesta a el virus COVID-19:: Las oficinas públicas de PUD estan CERRADAS A EL PUBLICO hasta pronto aviso Nuestros representates de servicio al cliente aún están trabajando y están listos para ayudarte!! Llámanos al 360 426-8255 Necesitas pagar tu factura? • Utiliza la application SmartHub o visitanos en linea en my.pud3.org • Utiliza nuestras buzones de deposito. • Utiliza el nuevo quiosco localizado en 310 W Cota St en el centro de Shelton. Chécalo en acción! 

Portable Electric Space Heaters

Portable Electric Space Heaters

Space Heaters may be the number one culprit of high energy bills in Mason County.

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Do you have some space heaters plugged in around your home to help keep the temperature up this winter? Perhaps it is because your heating system can’t keep up with cold temperatures? Maybe your home is under-insulated, not well sealed against drafts, and the cold just can’t be beat? Portable space heaters provide close-area-comfort, but they can also provide a surprising hit to your electricity bill at the end of the month. One of the questions we get in such circumstances is “How can such little heaters use so much electricity?” The simple answer is that space heaters use lots of electricity on their own; especially when teamed up with others throughout a home or business.

The Columbia Basin Hearald has a great article about some of the risks associated with heating your home with space heaters.

WARNING: LED Electric Fireplaces might cost more to operatate than you were expecting!

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Most electric space heaters are rated at 1,500 watts. In operation, all 1,500-watt electric space heaters produce the same amount of heat and use the same amount of electricity, regardless of cost, brand name or style. Each 1,500-watt portable electric space heater costs up to $75.00 per month to operate. This includes oil filled portable space heaters. This can be tricky, because the oil in the oil-filled space heaters is used as a heat transfer liquid, not as a fuel. Electricity is the fuel.

Space heaters are intended to supplement existing heat sources, or increase the temperature of a small area for a short amount of time. They use convection, which moves heated air around the room. Others rely on radiant heat, which give off infrared radiation to warm people and objects that are in their line of sight and in close proximity. When choosing a space heater, perhaps under your desk at work or near your easy chair, a radiant heater can be slightly more efficient because they warm the object they are aiming at, rather than the air in the room. Consider a heater with a thermostat to ensure that it turns off when it reaches a selected temperature. Remember, as long as it’s on, if it’s a 1,500 watt space heater, it’s still using 1,500 watts of electricity, regardless of the heating method!

The reason people opt for using a space heater is that their existing heat system isn’t doing its job. Prime culprits include leaky ductwork, insufficient insulation, or a malfunctioning heating system. A poorly operating heating system, combined with space heaters, drives up the consumption of electricity and inflates utility bills.
 
If a house has leaky ductwork or a manufactured home has a disconnected crossover duct, a customer is essentially heating the great outdoors. Insufficient insulation means that precious warm air escapes easily into the elements. A malfunctioning heat pump system (perhaps a compressor is not working or there’s a refrigerant leak), means emergency heat strips turn on and the cost to run it can skyrocket. Adding space heaters is a costly band-aid, and may not address your real heating issues! If you suspect your heating system isn’t working properly, contact a heating technician right away. The cost of putting off the inevitable often outweighs the proper fix.

 

PUD 3 has many great energy conservation programs available, including expert advice, low/moderate income insulation and duct sealing opportunities. If you have questions about your home energy usage, portable electric space heaters, insulation, ductwork, or heating systems, feel free to call an energy advisor in the PUD 3 conservation department at (360) 426-0777.

A final note: please be safe when using a space heater. Unplug them when not in use. Never leave a space heater unattended. For more information, see the US Department of Energy's Portable Heaters website

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