Summer Energy-Saving Tips for Your Home

Don’t let the warm weather turn into “summertime blues” when the monthly electric bill  arrives. Here are some tips from Jones-Onslow to help keep your electric bill in check.

Adjust the thermostat

During the warmer months of summer, raising the thermostat a few degrees can save you real money. Set the temperature between 78-80 degrees Fahrenheit and you could save up to 8 percent on monthly cooling bills. Programmable thermostats make it easy to save by offering pre-programmed settings to regulate a home’s temperature throughout the year. Go to joemc.com and visit the “Ask Chuck” section on the homepage to learn more.

Be a “fan-atic”

While they don’t replace an air conditioner or a heat pump, fans move the air so everyone feels more comfortable. On milder days, fans can save as much as 60 percent on electric bills. Whether it’s a portable fan or a ceiling fan, it’s simple…fans cool people, not rooms, so turn them off when you are leaving.

Regular maintenance essential

Have your HVAC systems serviced annually by a certified technician. HVAC professionals will check the entire system to make sure it is running efficiently. This will help extend the life of the system and save money.

Use energy-efficient bulbs

Replace old, standard incandescent light bulbs, that have been in your home for years, with efficient CFLs or even LEDs. While they cost more upfront they’ll save you money down the road.

ENERGY STAR equipment

When it’s time to replace that cooling system, we recommend replacing it with an ENERGY STAR qualified model. This could reduce energy costs by as much as 30 percent. Rebates from JOEMC (on qualified models) are available to help reduce your upfront cost.

Being prepared for summer storms

You hear it softly in the distance, a low rumble. Then the ping-ping-ping of thick, heavy rain drops. North Carolinians can expect to hear the familiar, rhythmic sounds of thunderstorms 40-50 times per year, mostly during summer months, according to our State Climate Office. Though familiar, the sounds sometimes precede dangerous weather capable of impacting every nook and cranny of North Carolina.

Summer storms in North Carolina run the gamut from rain to hail to high winds, and even tropical storms and hurricanes. June is the official kickoff to hurricane season, and it’s a good month to refocus on tips and information that will help keep you safe this summer regardless of what kind of North Carolina weather you encounter.

SUMMER STORM SAFETY TIPS

  • Develop an evacuation route now, in advance of summer storms and hurricane season. The plan should identify the safest routes away from your area, as well as the closest shelters.
  • Determine a safe place in the home to gather during severe thunderstorms, away from windows, skylights or glass doors that could be broken by hail.
  • Create a family disaster supply kit and be sure to include the following: a battery operated radio, flashlights, a first aid kit, non-perishable food items, a three-day water supply, a non-electric can opener, medicines and cash.
  • Teach children to call 911 in case of an emergency. Communicate with family members to be sure they know how to respond in a storm situation.
  • Remember your pets when planning for possible evacuation. Not all emergency shelters allow pets. Contact your local humane society to learn which animal shelters accept pets during disasters.
  • Keep JOEMC’s outage reporting phone number (800-681-4146) in a handy place.

 

KEEP UP WITH OUTAGES ONLINE AT OUR WEBSITE
Providing reliable power is our top priority. However, sometimes circumstances beyond our control cause members to lose power. To keep up with the outages on our system, members can go to joemc.com and click on the “Outage Management” section on our homepage. The map has around-the-clock access to outage information, is updated in real-time, and shows the number of customers affected by outages.

Congratulations to this year’s basketball camp scholarship winners

Two local students have been selected to represent Jones-Onslow EMC at basketball camps this summer.

Tymir Brown, from Northwoods Park Middle School, will attend the Roy Wil-liams Basketball Camp this month at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Shelby Parker, from Topsail Middle School will attend the NC State Wolfpack Academy in Raleigh.

Students currently enrolled in the 6th, 7th, or 8th grades were eligible to participate in the contest. Recipients were selected as a result of their excellent applications and essays on why they wanted to attend the basketball camp.

JOEMC, along with the other electric cooperatives in the state, will send more than 50 middle school students to camp on full scholarships this year.

Stay out of hot water: operate your pool or hot tub energy efficiently

While your swimming pool or hot tub can be a great place to unwind, you may tense up again when you get your power bill. There are a few things you can do to keep bills in check…starting with regular maintenance.

For pools, keep the pump and strainer baskets clean and backwash the filter according to the manufacturer’s recommended specifications. For hot tubs or spas, be sure to change old or dirty filter cartridges.

Take a look at the pool pump and how you operate it. Make sure the pump is properly sized by a pool professional. And remember, it’s more economical to keep the pool clean by manually removing most debris and keeping the chemistry right level than by constantly recirculating water. Experts suggest using a timer to operate the pump six hours a day and gradually increase the run time if needed.

Heating can extend the pool season as well so if you do decide to heat your pool, consider an energy efficient heater such as a heat pump water heater or solar pool heater. The cooler you set the temperature, the less energy you use.

To reduce the cost of operating a hot tub or spa, start with an energy efficient model. Make sure your insulated cover is still in good condition and isn’t waterlogged. Adding a floating blanket can decrease the amount of heat lost and for energy efficiency, set the thermostat to 96 degrees Fahrenheit during warm weather and no higher than 102 degrees Fahrenheit when it’s colder.

 

Three JOEMC board members recognized for service

Three cooperative board members, with a combined 65 years of experience and service to Jones-Onslow EMC and its members, were recently recognized for their contributions.

Board member Douglas Parker, who represents members in District One, was honored for 35 years of service while board members Dale Powell (District One) and Mack Whitney (District Two) were each recognized for 15 years of service.

“These men have dedicated themselves to Jones-Onslow and its members for many years,” said Board Chairman John Pierce. “They are men of high character and integrity and they have worked hard to make Jones-Onslow a model of excellence, not only in the state of North Carolina but throughout the country.”

The commendable service awards were Dale Powell presented at the North Carolina Association
of Electric Cooperative’s (NCAEC) annual meeting on April 13. NCAEC is the trade association for the 26 electric cooperatives in North Carolina, including Jones-Onslow.



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