KISSIMMEE, Fla., August 12, 2013 – Near-record electricity consumption this month by customers of Kissimmee Utility Authority will likely lead to higher power bills in the coming weeks.
The recent heat wave combined with the lack of afternoon thunderstorms has forced air conditioners to work overtime.
“As temperatures rise, so does demand for air conditioning,” said utility spokesman Chris Gent. “Our customers on average have used 11 percent more electricity in August than they did in July and 8.5 percent more than in June.”
The utility came closest to its all-time power demand last Tuesday, Aug. 6 when its system peak hit 325.6 megawatts (MW). KUA’s all-time system peak is 338.8 MW 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.
• Use oscillating and ceiling fans instead of lowering the thermostat setting – but remember to turn them off when you’re not in the room.
• 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 (https://kua.com) is Florida’s sixth largest community-owned utility powering 64,000 customers in Osceola County, Fla.
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Chris M. Gent