CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- With near record-high temperatures across the Carolinas, Duke Energy is seeing energy usage climb to summer levels.
"October is generally a low-usage month for customers who need little to no air conditioning or heating to stay comfortable," said Nelson Peeler, Duke Energy senior vice president and chief transmission officer. "With the overall usage we are seeing, we know cooling systems across the region are running throughout the day and into the evening, and that's going to affect power bills come November."
Duke Energy has sufficient resources to meet customers' energy needs through this unusual fall heat wave, but offers the following tips to help manage energy costs.
Energy efficiency tips to combat the heat
- Set your AC to the highest comfortable setting. Every degree increase saves about 3 percent in cooling costs. ENERGY STAR® recommends a minimum set point of 78 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Don't cool an empty house. If you'll be out and about, adjust or program your thermostat to work around your schedule.
- Close the blinds. Shutting blinds, drapes and shades during the hottest part of the day can keep the sun's rays from heating your house.
- Use fans in occupied rooms. They circulate air to supplement air conditioning. Make sure the fans are set to operate in a counterclockwise direction.
- Use heat-producing appliances such as your oven and stove and your washer and dryer at night when it's cooler to avoid building up heat in your home during warmer times of day.
Monitoring your energy use
Duke Energy offers ways to monitor your energy use to help customers avoid billing surprises, including:
- Customers who have smart meters can monitor their hourly and daily energy usage online. This helps customers track their energy use and make adjustments in between billing cycles to help them save energy and money. duke-energy.com/our-company/about-us/smart-grid/smart-meter
- Duke Energy Carolinas customers can take control of their electricity use and monthly budget with Usage Alerts. Customers will automatically receive an email halfway through the billing cycle. The email will include the current bill amount and a projection of what their final monthly bill could be. Customers also have the option to receive mid-cycle alerts via text message. Customers can set up budget alerts to help keep their bill in check. They will be informed when their bill is expected to reach a specific dollar amount of their choosing, allowing them to course-correct and cut back on usage if they wish.
- Customers also receive high bill alerts if their bill is projected to be $30 and 30 percent higher than usual. This projection is based upon historical usage and whether the temperatures are higher or lower than last month. The courtesy alerts are sent halfway through the normal billing cycle, allowing customers to have time to make energy-saving choices to help reduce their bill. In order to receive an alert, a customer should have a current email address on file and at least 12 months of usage history. duke-energy.com/home/billing/high-bill-alerts
For more information, tips, programs and ways to save money, visit duke-energy.com.
About Duke Energy
Headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., Duke Energy is one of the largest energy holding companies in the United States. Its Electric Utilities and Infrastructure business unit serves approximately 7.5 million customers located in six states in the Southeast and Midwest. The company's Gas Utilities and Infrastructure business unit distributes natural gas to approximately 1.6 million customers in the Carolinas, Ohio, Kentucky and Tennessee. Its Commercial Renewables business unit operates a growing renewable energy portfolio across the United States.
Duke Energy is a Fortune 125 company traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol DUK. More information about the company is available at duke-energy.com.
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