Our frigid temperatures have your home's heat sources working overtime, and we bet you are not looking forward to getting that next electric bill!
Tuesday morning, with highs in the single digits across East Tennessee, TVA reached its highest power demand since 2015, at more than 30,000 megawatts. The utility also set a holiday record on New Year's Day by reaching 28,891 megawatts.
TVA did issue a request to local utilities and customers Tuesday morning to voluntarily reduce usage, especially in the early morning hours. You can help by turning off nonessential lights, appliances, and electrical devices. Postponing using the dishwasher and dryer until later in the day is also a good idea, as well as lowering your thermostat.
Friday morning, TVA tweeted that they had supplied over 600 gigawatt-hours of energy for each of the last five days marking a tie for the second longest streak in TVA history.
Voluntary reduction helps ensure a continued supply of power to essential services throughout the Tennessee Valley and to avoid interruptions in service to all customers.
Top 10 Tips for Saving Energy this Winter
- Let there be light—Keep curtains open on the south side of the house and closed on the north during the day to trap the warming sunlight.
- Increase your home's IQ—Install an ENERGY STAR certified programmable thermostat.
- Steady as you go—Set your thermostat to 68°F. Turn it down even more when no one is home for several days. (Every degree you set your thermostat below 68 in the winter can save up to 3 percent PER DEGREE on your bill!)
- Bundle up—Insulate heating and cooling ducts and repair any air leaks. Add insulation to your attic, crawlspaces and any accessible exterior walls.
- Keep it clean—Change air filters monthly. Dirty filters force your heating system to work harder.
- Seal it up—Caulk and weather-strip around windows and doors and install insulating gaskets to exterior light switches and electrical outlets to stop air leaks.
- Family meals—Take advantage of the heat generated by cooking.
- Close the damper—Don't send warm air up the chimney. Make sure the fireplace damper is closed when not in use.
- Decorate—Use area rugs if you have hardwood or tile floors to keep your feet warm.
- Create breathing room—Keep weeds and debris away from the outdoor unit of your heating system.