With freezing temperatures in the forecast for Central Florida this weekend, OUC has tips to keep your family safe and help keep your bill under control.

Before you plug in your space heater keep these tips in mind.

Check your heater. Before each use, inspect your heater for loose connections, frayed cords or broken plugs – if you find any do NOT use.

Follow the three-foot rule. Keep heaters at least three feet away from bedding, drapery, rugs and anything that can burn.

Place on flat, level surfaces. Never place space heaters on furniture, carpet or rugs. If the unit were to overheat, it could start a fire.

Always unplug. Turn off and unplug space heaters and electric blankets when not in use.

Avoid extension cords and surge protectors. Plug space heaters and electric blankets directly into a wall outlet to prevent overheating and electrical fires.

Freezing temperatures can damage water pipes and pool pumps.

Insulate exposed pipes. Cover exposed water pipes with towels or blankets.

Turn on faucets. Allow a trickle of water to flow through exposed pipes and faucets that share an exterior wall.

Protect your pool pump. Keep your pool pump running to prevent freezing.


As temperatures drop, your energy bill can spike. 

Set your thermostat to 68°. If you are away from home set it to 65 degrees.

Keep the cold air out. Close blinds at night and place towels around windows and door tracks to block cold air from coming inside.

Let the warm air in. During the day open blinds to let sunshine warm your home.

For more cold weather energy-saving and safety tips, visit ouc.com/coldweather.