July 26, 2005, Columbia, S.C. - South Carolina Electric & Gas customers set a new record for electric use today as high summer temperatures gripped South Carolina.
A new peak demand record of 4,665 megawatts of electricity over a one-hour period was set by SCE&G customers at 4 p.m. Today's usage peak surpassed the previous system peak record of 4,574 megawatts, which was established July 14, 2004.
One megawatt of electricity is equivalent to the amount of electricity used by about 330 homes during one hour. A megawatt hour is 1,000 kilowatts of electricity used continuously for one hour.
With the mercury soaring and air conditioners working overtime, there are some simple things customers can do to help control energy costs:
- Set your thermostat at 78 degrees or higher. For each degree below 78 degrees, your cooling costs increase by 5 to 10 percent.
- Use ceiling or floor fans wherever possible, but only use them when you're in the room. Fans use very little energy and can make a room feel more comfortable.
- Check your air filters once a month and replace if dirty so your air conditioner won't have to work as hard.
- Make sure your air-conditioning unit is not blocked by shrubbery, leaves or other objects, and that the vents that bring cool air into your home are unobstructed.
- Keep the cool air in and the heat out.
- Check doors and windows to make sure they're well sealed…if necessary, caulk around windows, and replace weather stripping around doors.
- Keep shades and drapes closed so the sunlight isn't adding to the warmth of the house (keeping them closed also helps reduce the amount of cool air that escapes from your home).
More easy-to-implement tips on how you can control energy costs during the hot summer months are available at www.sceg.com.
SCE&G is the largest subsidiary of SCANA Corporation, an energy-based holding company principally engaged, through subsidiaries, in electric and natural gas utility operations, and other energy-related businesses. Information about SCANA and its businesses is available on the Company's Web site at www.scana.com.