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Preparing for winter: How to properly drain outdoor faucets

One of the biggest problems you can encounter in the winter is your pipes freezing. Water freezing in your pipes during the cold months can lead to them bursting, and that could be a financial and home-repair nightmare. There’s a simple task you can do now to prevent this: drain…...

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Update: Your power bill and the White House

The White House is on a campaign to bail out struggling fossil-fuel plants—and raise our electricity costs. There’s been a new development, and we’re asking you to send a message to Washington. What’s the update? The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has unveiled its proposal to replace the “Clean Power Plan.” (The Clean…...

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CUB reviews EPA’s new Affordable Clean Energy rule

You’ve probably read the headlines about the Environmental Protection Agency’s proposed “Affordable Clean Energy” (ACE) rule. EPA moves to replace Clean Power Plan with modest carbon regulations Trump’s “Affordable Clean Energy” plan won’t save coal Cost of new E.P.A. coal rules: Up to 1,400 more deaths a year Here’s a…...

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Why Chicago (and my brother) may face a heating-affordability crisis

By Jennifer Jones, CUB communications assistant When CUB Executive Director David Kolata recently described the Peoples Gas pipeline-replacement program as “a looming disaster” for Chicago gas bills it hit close to home, because my brother Milton has been a Chicagoan for the past decade. Last winter, he and other customers…...

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Breaking: Illinois’ solar boom

Have you seen the latest the headlines solar power has been generating this summer? Southern Illinois is becoming a hot place for energy companies to build solar farms–Belleville News-Democrat More Solar Farms Planned–The Times, Ottawa Six solar farms considered in Whiteside County–The Dispatch of Moline/Rock Island Argus Coal was king…...

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Getting your home ready for fall and winter

You might want to ignore the fact that winter is fast approaching, but now is the perfect time to to start preparing your home for the cold months ahead. Here’s a checklist of “to-dos” so your home is ready for the chilliest time of year. Furnace inspection. Have a certified…...

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Chicago’s looming disaster?

Did you know that last winter, you paid 80 percent more for natural gas service, on average, than your friends and relatives in the suburbs? And a big reason appears to be the mismanaged Peoples Gas pipe-replacement program. That’s what Crain’s Chicago Business reported in a recent story with this ominous…...

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CUB, consumer team up to land $200 AT&T credit

Schaumburg resident and CUB member Richard Hetzer has been an AT&T customer for more than 50 years. While service hasn’t always been the best—with phones and internet sometimes going out four or five times in a month—Richard remained a customer. But recently, he had to go to great lengths to…...

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No joke, hourly electricity prices can actually drop below zero

Most ComEd customers are stuck on the utility’s standard electricity price that only changes twice a year, so it may be hard to believe that the actual market price of electricity can get really low, even, for short periods drop below zero. That’s right, the market price occasionally drops below…...

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“Vampire power” could be to blame for your high electric bill

Turning your electronics off when you’re not using them seems like a simple way to cut down on your power bill. But that won’t stop “standby power,” a.k.a. vampire power. Think about your toaster, coffee maker, televisions, desktop computers and DVRs. You may leave these devices off for periods of time, but…...

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