Whether your community’s load management programs use switches, generators, or both, October is the perfect time to start planning for the winter chill. The details may differ for each community, but the goal is the same: Reduce your wholesale power costs by decreasing the demand on your electric system when demand is highest.
Residential Load Management
Participating in a residential load management program involves having a remotely controlled switch attached to customers’ appliances that have the most impact on peak demand.
“October through early November is a good time to inform those customers who aren’t participating in load management about how your program works and the value of it,” says ElectriCities Field Operations Manager, Jason Thigpen.
Those already participating need a different message. Transitioning from summer to winter means:
- Different appliances are affected. Water heaters are typically controlled year-round, but heat strips replace air conditioners in the winter months.
- Load management time of day changes. In winter, peak demand is usually from 7 a.m. to 9 a.m. Summer peaks are typically in the afternoon.
Utility, Commercial, and Industrial Load Management
Much of non-residential load management involves generators on both sides of the meter. Whether your program involves generators owned by the city or town or by the customer, take time now to get them ready for winter.
Jack Yox, ElectriCities Lead Generator Specialist, advises:
- Check for leaks, puddles, or other issues that need to be addressed before running your generator(s).
- Ensure coolant and oil are at the appropriate levels.
- Make sure block heaters are functioning properly so you can avoid starting a cold engine.
- Make sure your batteries are fully charged and the battery charger is working properly.
“Almost every member participates in load management in some form, which collectively saves them millions of dollars each year,” says Thigpen. “Taking timely steps to prepare to manage the winter demand peaks ensures your utility and your customers don’t miss out on those savings.”
For more information about transitioning to winter load management, contact Jason Thigpen.