John Thompson • Jan 17, 2018 at 6:57 PM

ELIZABETHTON — Although Elizabethton and Carter County have experienced a lot of cold weather this winter, the Elizabetehton Electric Department issued a few cold-temperature tips on how residents can help reduce their future electric bills and help ensure the power grid remains reliable.

Ken Markland, Elizabethton Electric Department’s marketing and industrial services coordinator, said the Tennessee Valley Authority is encouraging the energy conservation during the recent outbreak of wintry weather because it is impacting the system’s entire operations area from Memphis to the North Carolina line and as far south as northern Alabama.

Markland said the temperatures from the current blast of cold weather should begin moderating Thursday afternoon, but until then and during future cold spells, he offered the following tips which will add up to savings on your electric bill.

• Turn thermostats down a few notches. Markland said turning thermostats down just a degree or two makes a big difference. He said that for every degree below 68 degrees, the savings could be as much as 3 percent of your future electric bills. The Elizabethton Electric Department has turned down the thermostats at its own facilities.

• Delay using large appliance, like your dishwashers, washing machines and electric dryers, during peak demand periods, typically between the hours of 6-9, in both morning and evening.

• If the weather is sunny, open your window coverings on the sunny side of the house to let nature’s heat help keep your house comfortable. Keep the window coverings closed on shaded sides to help add insulation to keep the heat indoors.

Markland also said that during temperature extremes it is important to check on relatives, friends and neighbors to ensure their safety and to check on pets and livestock to make sure they are safe.

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