With temperatures expected to remain near 100 degrees into next week, Omaha Public Power District suggests customers should plan now to conserve energy not only to reduce electricity use but also to reduce their bills for the coming period.
Sweltering temperatures and high relative humidity typically mean many air conditioners will be working in overdrive. The prolonged heat can also result in stress to the district’s electric delivery system adding to the importance of reducing demand through conservation, especially during the peak usage hours which is usually between 3 p.m. and 8 p.m.
OPPD serves more than 360,000 customers in 13 counties in southeastern Nebraska. The district currently has adequate generation to meet customer demands. However, that could be affected by disruptions in the transmission and distribution system locally or in other parts of the Midwest.
There are a number of ways to conserve energy and save on your energy bill while you continue to stay cool during the current heat wave.
• Set your thermostat as high as comfortably possible. A one-degree increase can save 3 to 5 percent on energy.
• Keep window shades and blinds closed to block direct sunlight.
• Clean or change your system’s air filter monthly to save energy and help prevent system failure.
• Use ceiling fans to enable you to raise your thermostat about 4 degrees, with no reduction in comfort.
• Turn off fans when you leave the room. Fans cool people, not rooms, by creating a wind chill effect.
- Delay such task as dishwashing or laundry until after 8 p.m. and restrict the use of heat-producing appliances such as ovens until later in the day.
- Unplug appliances and shut off lights that are not in use.
- Shower early in the morning or later in the evening.
OPPD offers these and many other energy efficiency tips on its web site: www.oppd.com.
Other utilities throughout the Midwest have also asked their customers to conserve electricity during the current heat wave, including Nebraska Public Power District and the Lincoln Electric System.