Carthage, TN. As a heat wave grips our area, the Tennessee Valley Authority is asking customers to voluntarily reduce their power usage today, June 22.
The policy will be in effect from 12:00 p.m. until approximately 8 p.m. In voluntary curtailment, customers are asked to reduce electric consumption by turning off lights and not using major appliances during the hottest part of the day, such as ovens, dishwashers, and washers and dryers. Summer energy use is typically the highest between 12-8 p.m., according to TVA. This is typically the warmest part of the day and when people arrive home from work or school; as a result, energy rates are typically at their highest during that point. The agency has several tips to reduce power usage:
- Avoid running appliances during the hottest part of the day
- Ensure A/C units have clean air filters; dirty filters block cooler air and cause units to use more power than needed
- Minimize how often exterior doors and refrigerator doors are opened
- Use ceiling and floor fans to keep air moving, but only when a room is occupied; they use less power than an A/C unit
- Unplug unused or unnecessary electronics, even when off, they still use power if plugged in
- Recycle old appliances; TVA said older appliances are less energy-efficient than modern counterparts
- Switch to energy-efficient bulbs – not only do they use 75% less energy, but they put off less heat than old-school incandescent bulbs
- Turn up the thermostat – TVA recommends keeping the thermostat between 75-78 degrees during the day and even higher if no one is going to be home for a few days
- Keep curtains closed during the day on the south, west, and east sides of houses and apartments to block out sunlight
- Plant trees on the south or southwest side of houses to create shade and keep homes cooler
- Avoid using the oven and cook meals that require less heat from the stovetop or oven; consider using the microwave or air fryer
- Use the charcoal grill for outdoor cooking.