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CenterPoint Energy Home Service Plus® recommends fireplace tune-ups
Keep family warm and safe with an annual fireplace tune-up

MINNEAPOLIS - November 23, 2010 - CenterPoint Energy Home Service Plus® (HSP) recommends annual maintenance to help improve the safety and efficiency of fireplaces. Throughout the holidays, fireplaces are operated more frequently and many Minnesotans depend on a safe, reliable and efficient natural gas fireplace.

“We encourage customers to take advantage of the heating system tune-ups and inspection services we offer,” said Joe Vortherms, director of HSP. “An annual fireplace tune-up and inspection makes it run more safely and efficiently.”

An HSP fireplace tune-up includes important safety checks of operations, controls and for safe carbon monoxide (CO) ventilation. Technicians will clean burners, glass and pilot; check electrical wiring, ignition, pilot, safeties and venting; and test the gas valve and thermocouple. Most manufacturers recommend having gas-burning appliances inspected annually by a professional service provider, like HSP, to ensure safe operation. In some cases, failure to do so may void a warranty.

Fuel-burning appliances such as fireplaces, water heaters and stoves produce carbon monoxide (CO) that can reach dangerous levels if homeowners do not maintain or use them properly. The state of Minnesota requires all Minnesotans to have a CO monitor, which should be installed 10 feet from each sleeping quarter. Batteries should be checked regularly for proper operation.

Home Service Plus® is CenterPoint Energy’s non-regulated business providing repair plans, repair and maintenance services and new product sales and installation in the categories of heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) and home appliances. HSP serves the Minneapolis / St. Paul Twin Cities metro area and Greater Minnesota. Visit www.HSPtoday.com or call 1-877-HSP-1664 to learn more about Home Service Plus and schedule fireplace maintenance.

CenterPoint Energy, Inc., headquartered in Houston, Texas, is a domestic energy delivery company that includes electric transmission and distribution, natural gas distribution, competitive natural gas sales and services, interstate pipelines and field services operations. The company serves more than five million metered customers primarily in Arkansas, Louisiana, Minnesota, Mississippi, Oklahoma and Texas. Assets total more than $19 billion.  With about 8,800 employees, CenterPoint Energy and its predecessor companies have been in business for more than 135 years. In Minnesota, CenterPoint Energy is the state’s largest natural gas distribution utility, serving about 800,000 customers in 260 communities. The utility also operates a non-regulated business in Minnesota called Home Service Plus®. For more information, visit CenterPointEnergy.com.