Hot and humid weather is forecast throughout the week, which may lead to higher energy use as residents rely on air conditioning to keep cool. “Using electricity efficiently, especially during the hottest months, helps manage energy bills and allows the statewide electric system to provide reliable energy when demands are at their highest,” said Charles A. Freni, President and CEO of Central Hudson Gas & Electric Corp.
Ways in which customers can save energy include:
- Turning off lights and appliances when not in use, and unplugging electronic devices, such as televisions, entertainment systems and computers, that continue to draw power even when off. Some devices use up to 25 watts of “standby power” when idle, and approximately 10 percent of the total energy used by homes goes to power devices that are not in use. Plugging these devices into a power strip and then switching off the strip when the devices are not used is a convenient and effective way to reduce standby power.
- Setting thermostats on air conditioners to 78 degrees and higher during times when the home is not occupied as recommended by the U.S. Dept. of Energy, or according to the needs of household members. Also, changing dirty filters on air conditioners will help the unit run more efficiently, and residents may consider the use of fans to keep cool.
- Using large appliances such as dishwashers and clothes dryers during the evening hours, when overall energy use is less.
- Closing doors, windows, curtains, shades and blinds during the day to seal out the heat and block sunlight when temperatures are at their highest.
- Keeping refrigerator and freezer doors closed as long as possible, and limiting the time they are opened.
“Because more electricity is used in the summer and market prices for electricity are subject to the laws of supply and demand, there is the potential that electric supply prices set by the wholesale market may rise during periods of prolonged hot weather,” said Freni. “That creates the effect of increased usage with possibly higher prices. Using appliances efficiently, especially in the summer, can help residents manage their energy bills.”
Freni added that thunderstorms often accompany hot, humid weather, particularly as weather patterns change. “Our customers should be prepared for pop-up storms that could appear during or following this heat wave,” he said. Tips on preparing for and staying safe during storms is available at www.CentralHudson.com/Outages/Storm-Preparation--Safety.
Other ways to manage energy use it to learn about Central Hudson’s energy efficiency programs. For example, residents can save up to $700 on the purchase of high efficiency heat pumps or $1,600 per 10,000 BTUs on whole home systems; find savings on LED lighting and energy efficiency products on the CenHub store; and login for personalized savings for their home. For more information on programs, incentives and rebates, visit the My Energy link at www.CentralHudson.com.
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