Extreme cold temps mean high energy use
The first week in January brought record-breaking cold temperatures to the Florida panhandle causing many CHELCO members to increase their electricity usage and see higher bills.
“The cold snap in early January caused some of our members to increase their usage by an average of 38% over the same period last year. For some, the resulting electricity bill is surprising because we’ve had such mild winters over the last few years and we’ve had periods of mild temperatures since,” said Member Services Manager Ken Braidwood.
Ken adds that heating can account for 30 to 40 percent of overall average electric use each month. “If a member typically sets his thermostat at 70 degrees, in extremely cold conditions, that heater is working almost constantly to elevate the temperature so that member can expect to have a much higher bill than usual. Setting his thermostat down even two degrees lower can make a significant difference in usage. When members monitor and reduce their usage and employ energy saving tips, they save money.”
CHELCO members can monitor their usage using the Online Account feature at CHELCO.com or through use of the CHELCO Connect mobile app available at Google Play stores and iTunes.
“For some members, the higher-than-expected bill may be a hardship. CHELCO offers several payment methods and options that may help,” said Braidwood. “There are agencies that may be able to help including CHELCO’s Members helping Members program. For those members, I encourage them to contact our Member Service Representatives before their bill is due to discuss options.”