CERT Program of Kirkland, WA

PSE customers encouraged to be energy efficient as temperatures soar this summer

Tuesday, June 30, 2015 9:33 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

The following is a release from Puget Sound Energy:

Puget Sound Energy is encouraging its more than 1.1 million electric customers to be even more energy conscious when temperatures jump into the 90s this summer.

PSE’s electric infrastructure is performing well, and our generating facilities have the capacity to meet the needs of our customers. While excessive heat puts extra demands on the power grid, the region uses more energy on cold winter days than we will during this heat wave.

Over the years, PSE has been seeing more power consumption during the summertime as customers add some form of air conditioning in their homes; it’s estimated about 11 percent of our residential electric customers currently have AC. Because of that growth, energy conservation is even more important this summer. PSE plans for peak customer usage by constantly monitoring the health of the system and investing in infrastructure projects to keep the system redundant and reliable.

PSE’s one-hour summer record for power usage was set back on July 27, 2009. As temperatures reached into the 100s, 3,430 megawatt-hours (MWh) of electricity was used between 7-8 p.m. By comparison, PSE customers’ all-time, one-hour high for power usage was 4,906 MWh set on Dec. 15, 2008 during a major cold weather event.

Here is what customers can do to save energy:

• Set thermostats as high as comfortably possible. For those with central air or air conditioning, PSE recommends no lower than 75 degrees. That might seem on the warm side, but customers can save up to 5 percent on their electric bill by taking that simple step.

• Invest in a programmable thermostat that will automatically adjust the indoor temperature while away.

• Use fans to help circulate the air. Remember that ceiling fans cool residents, not the room, so make sure to turn off the fan when leaving the room.

• Make sure to close window blinds and curtains to block direct sunlight. In the evening, open windows for cross ventilation.

• Switch out any conventional light bulbs with LED or compact fluorescent light bulbs, which produce 70 percent less heat.

• Run appliances – such as dishwashers, clothes washers and dryers – at night. A hot dishwasher sends heat throughout the house; run only on full loads and use the ‘no heat’ option for the drying cycle.

• Consider cooking a later dinner or grilling outside to prevent any additional heat buildup.

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