BGE Provides Customers with Tips to Beat the Heat this Summer
BGE offers customers tips, tools and energy conservation programs, such as
PeakRewards^SM and the BGE Smart Energy Savers Program®, to help customers
manage energy and save money on bills, even on extremely hot days
Nearly 800,000 BGE customers with a new smart meter are eligible to receive
bill credits through the BGE Smart Energy Rewards® program by reducing energy
use during designated Energy Savings Days
BALTIMORE -- July 7, 2014
As summer starts to heat up, Baltimore Gas and Electric Company (BGE) provides
important energy efficiency and conservation tips, tools and programs to help
customers manage energy and save money on their bills, even on extremely hot
days. Rising temperatures outside results in higher energy use as customers
are using more energy to cool their homes. BGE reminds customers to keep
safety in mind during periods of extreme heat. Customers should only take
energy-saving measures as health permits.
“During the summer, a home’s cooling system typically accounts for
approximately half of a customer’s energy use,” said Stephen J. Woerner,
president and chief operating officer for BGE. “Even customers who leave their
thermostats at a set temperature will experience an increase in use when the
temperature outside is extremely hot because cooling systems must work harder
to maintain the set temperature. To help customers better manage energy bills
and alleviate the impact of extreme temperatures on bills, BGE offers a
variety of programs, billing options and energy-saving tips.”
Through BGE’s annual SummerReady program, the company completed a wide-range
of investments and preparations for the summer, including installing new
transmission and distribution wires and equipment, to position BGE to better
manage increased demand customers place on the electric system to keep their
homes and businesses cool in the hotter summer months.
BGE has several initiatives and programs to empower customers with tools to
better manage and reduce their energy bills. The BGE Smart Energy Savers
Program^® ^ initiatives help contain the cost of energy and improve
reliability, as well as help to reduce peak demand and slow the growth in
energy consumption to lessen the need for more power plants. BGE offers
energy-saving solutions for renters, homeowners, large and small business
customers, nonprofits and institutional customers. These programs support the
EmPOWER Maryland Energy Efficiency Act. Currently, through BGE Smart Energy
Savers Program^®, the following initiatives are available:
*Quick Home Energy Check-up
*Home Performance with ENERGY STAR rebates for home audits and energy
efficient home improvements
*Energy-efficient lighting discounts and appliance rebates
*Rebates for efficient heating and cooling equipment
Customers can find more information about the BGE Smart Energy Savers
Program^® at BGESmartEnergy.com, as well more energy-saving tips on the Summer
Ready section ofBGE’s website.
The BGE Smart Energy Rewards program rewards customers for voluntarily
reducing their electricity consumption on designated days and is automatically
available to all BGE residential customers with a smart meter. Eligible
customers can participate in the program by taking action to reduce
electricity usage from 1 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Energy Savings Days. BGE will
notify customers in advance of an Energy Savings Day via phone, email, or text
and provide them with tips to reduce their energy usage. Customers can earn a
bill credit of $1.25 for every kilowatt-hour of electricity saved. Last
summer, participating customers saved $6 - $10 on average per Energy Savings
Day. BGE anticipates that there will be 5-10 Energy Savings Days in the summer
Customers with smart meters are also encouraged to login to their BGE.com
account and view the BGE Smart Energy Manager tool to learn even more about
how to reduce their energy usage during hot summer months. Through the BGE
Smart Energy Manager, customers have access to a suite of energy management
tools to set a target budget for energy bills per month and track performance
on a daily basis, well before the bill arrives. Customers can also compare
energy usage to average households that are a similar size and determine how
and when they use the most electricity. BGE Smart Energy Manager also provides
customers with personalized cost-saving tips based on their energy usage data.
“Customers who participate in BGE’s Smart Energy Savers Programs, PeakRewards
and the BGE Smart Energy Rewards program help to reduce the demand on the
system, enhance reliability, reduce the carbon footprint in central Maryland,
while saving energy and money on their own energy bills,” said Woerner.
Higher outdoor temperatures can lead to increased energy usage associated with
air conditioning and other cooling devices, resulting in higher bills.
Customers can save energy and money this summer by following a few simple, low
to no-cost tips:
*Manage your thermostat: For customers with central air conditioning or
heat pumps, keep thermostats at a constant, comfortable level (74 to 76
degrees, or even higher) when at home. Raise the thermostat setting a few
degrees for days with extreme heat (90 degrees or higher) to save even
more. Lowering the thermostat setting below the desired temperature will
not cool your home faster; it will just waste energy and money.
*Check air conditioner size and placement: For those with room air
conditioners, ensure that the appliance is sized properly for the room and
turn the unit off if someone is not going to be in the room for an
extended period of time. Place window air conditioners on the north or
shady side of the house to avoid overworking the unit in the hot daytime
*Use fans to circulate air: For those without air conditioning, BGE
recommends ceiling fans or portable fans operating with the windows
partially open to circulate fresh air into your home. For those with air
conditioning, fans can be used to evenly distribute cool air and reduce
your air conditioners “on” time.
*Minimize appliance use during peak hours: Appliances can account for up to
25 percent of your home's energy use and produce heat that warms up your
home. Wait until after peak afternoon hours (between 1 p.m. – 7 p.m.) to
run your run your dishwasher, clothes washer, dryer and other electric
appliances. This will help reduce interior heat during the warmest part of
the day and save money on energy bills.
*Use appliances wisely: To reduce interior heat during the warmest part of
the day, run appliances such as ovens, washing machines, dryers and
dishwashers in the early morning or evening hours when it’s generally
cooler outside. Also, use a microwave to cook, or barbecue outside, if
possible, during the hottest days.
*Keep shades, blinds and curtains closed: About 40 percent of unwanted heat
comes through windows. Simply drawing blinds and curtains, which act as a
layer of insulation, can reduce heat gain to your home. Awnings are even
better and can dramatically reduce heat from the sun. Window coatings and
window film can reject as much as 80 percent of the heat from the sun.
*Keep the hot air out: Turn off all unnecessary lighting and appliances,
which add heat to the home. Keep doors to the outside, garage or attic
firmly closed to keep cool air in and hot air out.
*Look for energy-efficient appliances: When shopping for appliances such as
refrigerators, freezers and air conditioners, look for the ENERGY STAR®
label, and purchase the most affordable energy-efficient unit. Newer more
energy-efficient models lower monthly operating costs. Through the BGE
Smart Energy Savers Program, customers can receive $25 mail-in rebates for
new ENERGY STAR certified room air conditioning units and a $50 reward for
recycling old working refrigerators or freezers. To participate, customers
can contact BGE to schedule a pickup, and BGE will haul away the old
refrigerator or freezer at no additional cost.
*Replace inefficient lighting: Replace your old standard incandescent bulbs
with new compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFL) or light emitting diode
(LED) bulbs. CFLs and LEDs use about 75 percent less energy than
incandescent bulbs, and can last up to 30 times longer, depending on which
technology you choose.
Summer also brings the potential for severe weather such as thunderstorms,
tropical storms and hurricanes, which can result in power outages. BGE has
been taking steps to ensure it is ready to respond if severe weather arrives
by reviewing its emergency response plan and working to ensure all employees
clearly understand and can execute their storm assignments. Every day, BGE
closely monitors approaching weather systems, assesses the potential impacts
on its service area and ensures the appropriate resources are in place before
those storms arrive.
BGE encourages customers to be prepared for severe weather and the possibility
of power outages, and to ensure the safety of their families and property
during electric service interruptions. BGE advised customers to have essential
items and information available, including BGE’s outage reporting number,
BGE provides customers with the ability to report power outages online via
BGE’s Facebook or Twitter page and on the company’s website, bge.com, which
can also be accessed via mobile devices using the mobile-enabled version of
bge.com. Customers can also visit bge.com to view the company’s outage map and
find information about storm preparedness and service restoration. BGE keeps
customers informed throughout severe weather events using a variety of
channels, including traditional news media, bge.com and its social media
channels (Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and Flickr).
For more information, visit bge.com.
BGE, headquartered in Baltimore, is Maryland’s largest gas and electric
utility, delivering power to more than 1.2 million electric customers and more
than 655,000 natural gas customers in central Maryland. The company’s
approximately 3,400 employees are committed to the safe and reliable delivery
of gas and electricity, as well as enhanced energy management, conservation,
environmental stewardship and community assistance. BGE is a subsidiary of
Exelon Corporation (NYSE: EXC), the nation’s leading competitive energy
provider, with 2013 revenues of approximately $24.9 billion. Like us on
Facebook and follow us on Twitter, YouTube and Flickr.
Baltimore Gas and Electric Company (BGE)
Rachael Lighty, firstname.lastname@example.org
BGE Media Hotline: 410.470.7433
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