Low temperatures bring high energy usage to Tennessee Valley.

            “With temperatures dipping into the teens and single digits during December and mid-January, utility bills may be higher than expected.” says CEO/General Manager of Fayetteville Public Utilities Britt Dye. “Frigid temperatures contribute to increased use because customers have a higher demand for their home heating units.”

            Fayetteville Public Utilities customers billed so far this month have used 57% more kilowatt hours (kWh) when compared with December 2017. Compared with January 2017, customers have used 15% more kWh. Temperatures are the biggest contributor to increased kilowatt usage. Degrees days are up 75% this month compared to last month and have increased 37% compared to last January.

            The Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA), which provides electricity to Fayetteville Public Utilities, initiated a "voluntary curtailment of energy usage" across its footprint that covers parts of seven southeast states on January 3. This came after the power demand the previous morning reached a high level that unofficially is gauged at 31,790 megawatts. TVA officials say that was the highest peak usage in the TVA's seven-state region since Feb. 19, 2015. TVA asked customers to keep electric usage at an absolute minimum.  It's the second time this winter that TVA has called for a voluntary reduction in power consumption.

            FPU’s total load peaked near or more than 100 Megawatts (MW) four separate days in January 2018. Based on history, the average load daily is 75 MW.

            TVA states with every degree thermostats are lowered, customers can save three percent on their electric bills. They recommend customers set their thermostats to 68 degrees Fahrenheit. Turn it down, even more, when no one is home for several days.

            Keep curtains open on the south side of the house and closed on the north during the day to trap the warming sunlight. Make sure the fireplace damper is closed when not in use. Don’t send warm air up the chimney. Use area rugs if the home has hardwood or tile floors.

            We understand this time of the year is hard for some customers, and we offer several ways to help out with payment of bills. Most of all, we want our customers to stay safe and healthy as we go into the new year. If you have any question about your utility bill, please contact us at (931) 433-1522.