Higher Temperatures, Higher Bills

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KISSIMMEE, Fla., June 22, 2011 – Near-record electricity consumption this week by customers of Kissimmee Utility Authority will likely lead to higher power bills in the coming weeks.

“As temperatures rise, so does demand for air conditioning,” said utility spokesman Chris Gent. “Our customers on average have used 10 percent more electricity this week than last.”

The heat wave combined with the lack of afternoon thunderstorms has forced air conditioners to work overtime. The resulting demand for electricity has increased significantly each day:

Sunday, June 19 – 301.4 megawatts (MW)
Monday, June 20 – 317.0 MW
Tuesday, June 21 – 332.6 MW

The utility’s all-time system peak is 338.8 megawatts set on Aug. 10, 2007.

KUA offers the following energy-saving tips that require little or no expense and can help to reduce summertime energy costs:

• Set the thermostat on the highest comfortable setting (KUA recommends 80 degrees). Raising the temperature just two degrees can reduce cooling costs by as much as five percent.
• Close blinds, shades or drapes during the hottest part of the day to block the sun’s heat.
• Remember that window air conditioning units generally are not designed to cool more than one room.
• Clean or replace window unit or central air conditioning system filters monthly. Dirty filters cause air conditioners to work harder and use more energy.
• Set pool pumps and automatic sprinklers to run in off-peak hours.

Founded in 1901, KUA (http://kua.com) is Florida’s sixth largest community-owned utility providing electric and telecommunication services to 64,000 customers in Osceola County, Fla.

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Chris M. Gent
(407) 933-9836
cgent@kua.com