Yesterday’s frigid arctic temperatures caused PECO customer demand for electricity and natural gas to soar to record-breaking levels. Specifically, customer demand for electricity reached 7,148 megawatts (MW), shattering PECO’s previous all-time winter energy use peak of 6,852 MW set on February 5, 2007. Customer demand for natural gas totaled 759,550 thousand cubic feet (mcf), surpassing the previous all-time winter daily total of 718,362 mcf set on January 17, 2000. “Our customers depend on us to provide reliable power when they need it the most, especially during harsh temperatures, and our system continues to perform well,” said Craig Adams, PECO president and CEO. Adams said the company’s ongoing focus on maintenance and system enhancement projects throughout the year helped ensure customers were well served during record-setting conditions. PECO urges customers to stay safe during dangerous weather conditions. Customers experiencing any electric or natural gas issues should call the company immediately at 1-800-841-4141. To reduce the impact of extreme temperatures can have on monthly energy costs, PECO also reminds customers to use energy as efficiently as possible. Specifically,
- Check for drafts around windows and doors, and seal up any openings with weather stripping or even a rolled up blanket. A drafty house lets warm air escape and is much more costly to keep warm – especially on the coldest days of the season.
- Keep the fireplace damper closed tightly when not in use.
- Keep heating vents clean with a vacuum or broom and do not cover ducts with drapes or furniture that can block the airflow and possibly cause a fire.
- Use ceiling fans so the warm air that has risen can be redistributed around the room.
- Close off unoccupied rooms and regulate individual room temperatures by adjusting the registers. Adjust room registers so warm air flows across the floor and rises naturally.
- Keep your thermostat set at a constant, comfortable level – usually 68-70 degrees.
- Replace the filter for your heat pump or furnace for the new heating season. Dirty filters block airflow and force equipment to work harder – this increases operating costs and can cause damage.
- Wrap water heaters with an insulation blanket. These blankets are inexpensive and easy to install.
- And remember to turn off unnecessary lights and other electronics.