In hopes of avoiding the need for rotating power outages this week, Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) urges customers to conserve energy as much as possible. PG&E meteorologists are forecasting the heatwave to get even hotter and continue through Wednesday night, Aug. 19.
Conservation is critical to help reduce the need for the California Independent System Operator (CAISO) to direct the state’s utilities, including PG&E, to implement rotating outages in order to reduce load. With the weather forecasted to be even hotter, PG&E urges customers to be prepared for power outages.
Separate from the impact on rotating outages, conservation is also the best way to prevent stress and strain on the local power grid, helping to reduce other heat-caused power outages.
PG&E strongly urges all customers to conserve energy through next Wednesday.
Energy Saving Tips
Raise the thermostat: Cool homes and use air conditioners more during morning hours. Set the thermostat to 78 degrees when at home during the rest of the day, health permitting. Turn it up to 85 degrees or turn it off when not at home.
Use a ceiling fan: Turn on a ceiling fan when using the air conditioner, which will allow the thermostat to be raised about 4 degrees to save on cooling costs with no reduction in comfort. Turn off fans and lights when you leave the room.
Cover windows: Use shade coverings and awnings so the air conditioner won’t have to work as hard to cool the home.
Avoid using the oven: Instead, cook on the stove, use a microwave or grill outside.
Limit the opening of refrigerators, which are major users of electricity in most homes. The average refrigerator is opened 33 times a day.
Clean clothes and dishes early: Use large energy-consuming appliances like washing machines and dishwashers earlier in the day or late at night after 10 p.m.
Stay Safe and Cool Tips
Plan ahead: Check the weather forecast to prepare for hot days.
Keep an emergency contact list: Keep a list of emergency phone numbers.
Have a buddy system: Check in on elderly or frail people.
Stay hydrated: Drink plenty of water, even when you are not thirsty.
Stay cool: Take a cool shower or bath and wear lightweight, loose, light-colored clothing.
Stay safe: Stay out of direct sunlight and avoid alcoholic or caffeinated beverages.
PG&E also funds the operation of existing county- or city-run cooling centers throughout the state. These centers fill a critical need for those who might not have the means to cool and shelter themselves from prolonged hot temperatures.
To find a cooling center near you, call your local city or county government, or call PG&E’s toll-free cooling center locator line at 1-877-474-3266 or visit pge.com/coolingcenters.
PG&E does not anticipate initiating any Public Safety Power Shutoff events this week. Any power outages that occur during this hot spell are not PSPS events.