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Record-Breaking Temperatures Result in Increased Electricity Use

Tuesday, August 03, 2010

Utility Warns Customers of Higher-than-Usual Summer Bills


NEWARK , Del. – Delmarva Power officials are warning of higher-than-usual summer energy bills, citing electricity use is up 12 percent among its residential customers from this same time last year.

“Given the number of heat waves we’ve already experienced this summer, it goes without saying that air conditioners, fans and other cooling appliances are running harder and longer. Unfortunately, when electricity use is high, so is that monthly energy bill,” said Glenn Moore, Vice President, Delmarva Power Region.

Moore said the company regularly encourages customers to reduce their energy use to save on their monthly bill. It does this through many communication channels, such as the company website, social media, news releases, customer newsletters, bill messages and bill insertions.

“We recognize the hardship higher energy bills can pose for our customers, particularly during a hot summer, which is why we continue to provide them with ways they can reduce their energy use to save on their bill,” Moore said.

He added that customers who struggle to pay their electricity bills should contact the company’s Customer Care center at 1-800-375-7117 for information on financial assistance or to arrange a flexible payment plan.

In addition, Delmarva Power suggests the following ways for customers to save on their summer bills:

  • Register to use My Account, a Web-based interactive tool that is free and easy to use, at www.delmarva.com. My Account provides customers with a detailed analysis of their specific electricity use and offers ways they can reduce their use to save on their monthly energy bills.
  • Set your air conditioner’s thermostat between 75-78 degrees, if your health permits. Remember every degree raised on the thermostat can save as much as three percent on the energy bill.
  • Have the air conditioning system checked by a licensed technician to ensure it is in good working condition.
  • Change your air conditioner filter. A dirty filter causes the unit to run longer and inefficiently.
  • Close window shades, blinds, or drapes to block the sunlight during the hottest part of the day.
  • Move lamps, TVs, and other heat-producing items away from the air conditioner’s thermostat. Heat from these appliances could cause the air conditioner to run longer than necessary. Turn these appliances off when they're not being used.
  • Check that all windows and doors are tightly closed to keep cool air in and hot air out.
  • When possible, cook and use other heat-generating appliances, such as washers, dryers and dishwashers in the early morning or late evening when it usually is cooler.
  • Wash clothes in cold water and line dry.
  • Use dishwashers only when fully loaded. Dishwashers use the same amount of electricity whether they're full or empty. Use the air-dry option if your unit has one.
  • Consider preparing light summer meals that don't require a lot of cooking. If possible, use an outdoor grill or microwave oven for cooking.

Delmarva Power encourages customers to visit www.delmarva.com for additional information on saving energy and money in their homes or businesses. The company also offers its customers Budget Billing, a fixed payment plan based on the customer’s 12-month average bill, in which they can enroll either online or by contacting Delmarva Power Customer Care at 1-800-375-7117.

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Delmarva Power, a public utility owned by Pepco Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: POM), provides safe and reliable energy to nearly 500,000 electric delivery customers in Delaware and Maryland and over 123,000 natural gas delivery customers in northern Delaware.