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Xcel Energy gas customers: You can now put the heat above 63 again

The utility asked people to turn their thermostats down due to strain on its gas system.

Xcel Energy gas customers have been told they can once again set their thermostats to above 63 degrees.

The utility company made the request of its customers statewide on Wednesday as the extreme cold put "significant strain" on its natural gas system.

According to its website, Xcel has more than 436,000 gas customers in Minnesota, and these people had been asked to lower the temperatures in their home at a time when the wind chills outside went into the 50s below zero.

But the request of customers has been lifted as of 10 a.m. Thursday.

Meanwhile, the 150-or-so residents of Princeton who were put up in local hotels overnight after they lost their gas supply should have their homes reconnected today.

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Speaking to WCCO, Xcel said it should be turning the gas back on by noon, with technicians then going home-to-home to relight furnace pilot lights.

The Fortune 500 company said that demand for gas outpaced supply in the Princeton area, forcing the company to shut off supply to ensure the stability of the wider system, it told the TV station.

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