RIVERSIDE, Calif. – When triple digit temperatures start to heat up the city, Riverside Public Utilities’ electric customers are reminded to conserve energy whenever and wherever possible, especially during the peak demand hours of noon to 6 p.m..
“If everyone makes an effort to conserve at home and at work, it will help maintain system reliability and operations,” said Riverside Public Utilities’ General Manager David H. Wright.
Simple steps customers can take to stay cool and conserve power at home include:
• Setting thermostats to 78 degrees or higher – For every two degrees increase on a thermostat, customers could reduce cooling costs by about 5 percent.
• Cool with fans - Using electric fans and ceiling fans use less energy than air conditioning units and offer good air circulation and cooling.
• Use appliances during off-peak hours - Using major appliances such as dishwashers, clothes washers and dryers, ranges and air conditioners during off-peak hours (8 p.m. to noon), can dramatically reduce the demands on the city’s electrical power reserves.
• Close doors to rooms that are not occupied.
• Plant shade trees and shrubs near the air conditioner unit, but not blocking the airflow – a shaded unit uses as much as 10 percent less electricity.
• Keep refrigerators and freezers at the proper temperature – extreme cold settings use more energy.
• Clean refrigerator coils at least once a year, and make sure there is a space between the wall and the unit.
• Install energy-efficient lighting or compact fluorescent lights.
• Close drapes to keep out the hot daytime sun. Sunny windows make air conditioners work two to three times harder.
• Change air conditioner filters regularly. Dirty filters cause air conditioning systems to work harder than necessary and use more energy
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Riverside residents can also seek relief from hot days at local senior centers, community centers and libraries that serve as official city Cooling Centers. For additional information on cooling center locations and hours visit RiversideCA.gov or contact Riverside’s call center by dialing 311 (or 826.5311) from a local telephone.
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