Heat Alert Again Today

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Heat Alert Again Today

Postby ParkerLongbaugh » 2011 Jul 22 08:43

Another major heat alert today, and the possibility of brown-outs and black-outs throughout much of the mid-Atlantic. Our power management company said the mid-Atlantic is predicted to need more than 60,000 megawatts of electricity today! Yikes!

I suggest folks do some of these things, if they can:

1. Don't run your dishwasher, clothes washer, or any other large electricity-eating items between 1100am and 8pm today.
2. Make sure you've closed the curtains and shades on the sunny parts of your homes and offices to help keep the heat out and preclude additional air conditioning loads. If you can adjust your thermostat due to be away or only using part of the house, do so.
3. Avoid lots of trips in and out of your refrigerator or freezer during peak hours- this will help keep it from cycling the compressor on and off. Same for a well pump, if you have one- the startup drain is much larger than the running drain, so filling a pitcher on your counter is better than filling 15 glasses of water throughout the day.

If we do have a power loss, remember to keep your shades closed and your refrigerator door closed to help "coast" through it until it comes back up.


Stay cool and powered! :toothy:
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Re: Heat Alert Again Today

Postby Wise One » 2011 Jul 22 10:02

Those are excellent suggestions. Here are some additional musings that are related, if not quickly implementable by everybody.
  • Passive solar design is great. Most people think of this in terms of siting and windows for winter heating, but shading by deciduous trees, overhangs, louvers and awnings is also important for these summer heat episodes. Plan ahead for the years ahead in getting these options going.
  • Shades/blinds in the house help, but not much compared to what shading devices would do mounted outside the window. Once the energy is inside the house, most of the heat is already lodged in the house interior – only a little energy can be reflected back outdoors.
  • Many utility companies, especially in urban areas, have peak load management programs that offer financial incentives to commercial and residential customers if they will consent to allowing their power to be interrupted briefly during peaks. When I was a member of one utility's "Peak Rewards" program, they gave me $100 annually for allowing them to install free programmable thermostats (really nice modern Honeywell digital thermostats) that they could interrupt for up to 45 minutes, air conditioner and water heater only. We saw only one interruption in 3 years so it was very easy to live with. Utility companies have finally awakened to economic reality ... it's a lot cheaper to pay for peak load management than to buy new generating capacity, so everybody wins.
  • For the first time in our lives we have a geothermal heat pump system in our house. It is fantastic, with efficiency that blows your mind. It is silent, with no clattering of outdoor compressor/heat exchanger fans to annoy the neighbors.
    Cooling: instead of pumping heat uphill from 75F indoors to 100F outdoors, we pump heat downhill from 75F to 52F into the ground.
    Heating: instead of pumping heat uphill from 30F outdoors to a 68F indoors, we pump heat only slightly uphill from 52F in the ground into 68F indoors.
  • America is still stuck on ducted air distribution systems, a shame. Modern hydronic systems have large market penetration in Europe and I assume they will get here some day, but it's taking a helluva long time. Don't think 1930's radiators; think small quiet units that both heat and cool with a thermostat on every unit. Energy is distributed using small pipes instead of huge ducts.
  • There may be a white roof in your future, not only to keep your dwelling cooler but also to increase the albedo of the earth and attenuate global warming.
"If your only tool is a hammer, every problem looks like a nail."
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Re: Heat Alert Again Today

Postby Sam » 2011 Jul 22 13:48

Good information. LIked it.
Only in America could the people who believe in balancing the budget and sticking by the country's Constitution be thought of as
"extremists
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Re: Heat Alert Again Today

Postby ParkerLongbaugh » 2011 Jul 22 15:21

Appalachian Power said today would indeed have been a power emergency but wasn't for one reason: the decline in industrial and commericial demand. :(
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White Roofs

Postby Crux » 2011 Jul 22 18:32

Just so a white roof isn't mandated, or tax credits aren't issued if you install the white roof. Good gosh. Good ideas will come around organically. This stuff isn't that earth shattering. The most popular roof shingle sold in America AIN'T white. :angel5:
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He is a classic liberal, a libertarian at heart, and a conservative in the classical sense.
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Re: Heat Alert Again Today

Postby Wise One » 2011 Jul 25 13:03

the Capital on 07/25/11 wrote:Business: BGE reviewing PeakRewards program

The Baltimore Gas and Electric Co. officials said yesterday the utility is reviewing its PeakRewards program, which was activated during the record-breaking heat Friday, causing some customers’ homes to reach 90 degrees.

The 106-degree temperatures and a transformer problem triggered the first “emergency event” in four years for the energy-saving program, which allows the utility to turn off participants’ heating and air conditioning units when demand is at its highest. In exchange, participants save $50 to $100 per year.

BGE announced yesterday that the six-hour event Friday reduced peak energy demand by more than 600 megawatts — equivalent to a medium-sized power plant — and helped avoid brownouts and rolling blackouts.
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Wise one the sensitive liberal male....

Postby Crux » 2011 Jul 25 20:20

Do you even get out in the heat ELITE? I know you don't WORK in it.... :coffee:
crux identifies with Tea Party principles. Liberty. Smaller government. Lower taxes. Less spending.
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