With high temperatures and tight grid conditions, reducing energy use encouraged

June 14, 2021

thermostat at 78 degrees

The Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) is asking customers to reduce their electric use as much as possible through Friday, June 18. ERCOT reported a significant number of forced generation outages, combined with potential record electric use for the month of June, has resulted in tight grid conditions. Here are some tips for Austin Energy customers to help conserve energy:

  • Set thermostat at 78 degrees or higher. Each degree lower increases your energy use by 6 to 8 percent.
  • Raise the thermostat to 85 degrees when you are away for two hours or more. 
  • Point fans in your direction. Fans blowing directly on you can make it feel about 4 degrees cooler. In the summer, fan blades should move counterclockwise to push cool air downward. 
  • Close shades and curtains on windows hit by direct sunlight to prevent heat from getting indoors. 
  • Avoid using the oven or doing laundry during the hottest time of the day. 

Find more conservation tips at austinenergy.com/go/summer

Austin Energy staff works year-round to maintain and monitor a diverse mix of power generation plants to ensure peak performance during extreme conditions. The utility also employs various Demand Response programs that help lower electric use during strained grid conditions, including the Power Partner Program. As we prepare for high temperatures, we encourage you to keep an eye on your energy use.

In 2020, Austin Energy rolled out Weekly Electricity Update and High Bill Alert emails providing customers with electricity usage details and energy-efficiency tips. These emails help customers learn more about their electricity usage patterns and trends. They also contain insights and tips to help customers lower their electricity usage and save on their bills.

The Weekly Electricity Updates email compares energy usage rates from week to week, while the High Bill Alerts email lets customers know when their usage is higher than compared to the same monthly cycle from the previous year.

These notifications are a free and optional service automatically provided to eligible City of Austin customers with an advanced meter at their location and an email address on file. Customers can unsubscribe at any time.