Xcel: Customers to keep meters clear

Xcel: Customers to keep meters clear Click to Enlarge Photo:

Feb 21, 2014 at 3:22 pm

MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. -- With higher snow totals than in recent years affecting the Upper Midwest, and with another storm hitting the region, Xcel Energy urges natural gas customers to keep their gas meters free of ice and snow to prevent the potential for a dangerous natural gas pressure buildup in their homes. 

The accumulation of ice and snow on or around natiural gas meters can lead to hazardous natural gas buildup inside a house or other buildings. Melting snow and ice on roofs and in trees can drip on meters, then refreeze, increasing the potential for a meter malfunction, Xcel Energy also recommends that appliance vents, often located on a home's roof, be kept clear in order to operate properly. 

It is also recommended that customers maintain a clean path to and from the meter to allow easy access in the event of an emergency. Carefully shovel around the meter and clear the meter itself by hand. Avoid using any sharp tool, shovels or snow blowers on or near the meter and piping. 

Xcel Energy encourages annual inspections of natural gas appliances and venting systems as a key defense against carbon monoxide posisoning. With heavy snowfall, it's possible that your home's venting systems, such as an outdoor air intake vent to a fuel-burning appliance, can become packed with snow or ice. 

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