Skip Ribbon Commands
Skip to main content

For Immediate Release


Pepco Urges Customers to A.C.T. Now - Thousands May Qualify for Energy Assistance

A void Getting Behind - C all for Help - T ake Control

WASHINGTON - Pepco realizes that the recession and housing crisis have impacted the incomes of our customers. "Nearly one in every 10 mortgages was delinquent as of June this year, according to a recent study by the Urban Institute and Fannie Mae," said Thomas Graham, President, Pepco Region. "Many customers, who may not have qualified for energy assistance in the past, may now be eligible for help due to a change in their financial status." That's why Pepco urges customers to A.C.T. now.

1. Avoid Getting Behind

If customers are experiencing difficulty paying energy bills but are current, they should consider enrolling in the Budget Billing Program, an alternative payment plan that allows customers to pay electric bills in equal monthly installments even though actual electric usage fluctuates from month to month.

2. Call for Help

If customers are behind in paying their energy bills, contact Pepco immediately to work out a payment plan. Customer representatives also have information about energy assistance programs in the District of Columbia (LIHEAP and RAD) and in Maryland (MEAP). Customers, who may not have qualified for help in the past, may now be eligible for energy assistance due to a change in financial circumstances such as loss of employment.

3. Take Control

Heat pumps work harder to keep homes warm when the outdoor temperature falls to about 35 F or below. At that point, the supplementary heat is automatically activated. Customers will know it is running by the indicator light for supplementary heat or "Aux" auxiliary heat on your thermostat. Programmable heat pump thermostats help customers save money by allowing the customer to program the thermostat to automatically adjust the temperature in their home at various times.

  •  In addition, customers can activate the supplementary heat by manually raising the thermostat temperature as little as 2 degrees. Regardless of whether the supplementary heat is activated automatically or manually, the supplementary heat light will come on to indicate the back-up heat's operation. 
  •  Turn down thermostats from 72 F to 68 F for eight hours a day and save as much as 10 percent on energy costs. Every degree the thermostat is lowered could save about 3 percent on heating bills. 
  •  Winterize windows and doors with weather stripping (for all moveable joints) and caulk (for non-moving parts). Also, install a window kit to the inside of windows to help keep out cold air and keep in warm air.
  • Change filters at least monthly; excessive buildup of dust on the filter increases power drawn by the air handler fan and reduces airflow through the system, reducing performance. Clean the outside heat exchanger/fan unit periodically to remove dirt, dust, leaves or insect nests, as dirty units reduce performance and increase energy usage.
  • Inspect ductwork for any air leakage. If you feel air leaking at joints, use silver metal duct tape to seal them. Customers can save up to 10 percent of heating costs by eliminating those leaks.

For more information call Pepco at 202-833-7500. For energy saving tips visit


Pepco, a subsidiary of Pepco Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: POM), delivers safe, reliable and affordable electric service to more than 750,000 customers in Maryland and the District of Columbia.

© Potomac Electric Power Company, 2023. All Rights Reserved.