NICE weather impacts energy use

There is no doubt that outdoor temperatures have an impact on the amount of energy used in homes and business.  When temperatures are extreme, Horry Electric tries to warn members to brace themselves for higher bills.  “This winter has been especially harsh,” says Eddy Blackburn, marketing analyst for Horry Electric Cooperative. “Residential kilowatt-hour use is weather driven and that has been evident in bills for use from the beginning of December all the way into February.”

Nice days also have an impact on energy use. “If you haven’t already signed up to keep track of your daily energy use through MyUsage.com, you definitely want to do so,” says Blackburn, adding that members will want to pay particular attention to data collected from 2/18 to 2/19 (Friday) and then from 2/19 to 2/20 (Saturday). 

“The temperatures for that first span of time, which was this past Friday,  ranged from a low of 52 degrees and a high of 77,” says Blackburn. The following day, which was Saturday, temperatures ranged from a low of 45 degrees to a high of 72. 

“Then take note of the  data collected for Thursday of last week and yesterday,” advises Blackburn.   

“Using the MyUsage.com chart, that would be the data collected from 2/17 to 2/18 for Thursday and the data collected from 2/20 to 2/21 for Sunday,” he continues,  explaining that the data for the preceding day and the temperatures for that specific day are actually posted around 8 a.m. the following morning.

“If you’re like the majority of members on the system, you’ll notice that your energy use on Thursday and Sunday were much different from Friday and Saturday, ” says Blackburn.  Temperatures on those days ranged from 71/42 degrees on Thursday and 57/38 degrees on Sunday.

Daily average temperatures are reflected by the red line and energy use is represented by the green bars in the MyUsage.com graph.

“To illustrate, we accessed information on an account on our system that typically uses an average of 112 kWh per day,” says Blackburn. The last four green bars represent Thursday through Sunday and the red line and the dots on it represent the average daily temperature.  “You can see that the energy use on this account was relatively the same on the two nice days this past week, but nearly double on Thursday and Sunday, when temperatures weren’t as pleasant,” says Blackburn.

“Other dramatic spikes reflected on this account are also illustrated by the chart,” says Blackburn. The first represents 226 kWh used on January 23rd when temperatures ranged between 49 and 19 degrees.  “The spike shown closer to recent two days of nice weather we had reflect 154 kWh used on February 13,” continues Blackburn. “The low temperature for that day was 29 degrees and the high was 59 degrees.”

“We enjoyed two very nice days of spring-like weather, but winter isn’t officially over,” cautions Blackburn. “We urge members to keep an eye on predicted temperatures and adjust their thermostats and other energy use accordingly.” In the winter months, Horry Electric officials recommend a setting no higher than 68 degrees.

For a closer look, access a pdf of the chart for the account used in the illustration.

Want to know more about MyUsage.com, a free service available to members of Horry Electric Cooperative?

Ready to jump right in and get started?  We are aware of sign-up issues with some of the meters on our system. If you can an error message, please call us at 843.369.2211 so we can start the account for you. After the initial sign-up, you’ll be able access your account and watch your use on your own.

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