Skip to Main Content

Unitil Recommends Energy Conservation as Heat Wave Hits Region

Demand expected to increase with heat and humidity levels reaching extreme levels
family in home
Hampton, NH

Unitil is recommending customers conserve energy as much as possible with high demand likely amid potentially record-breaking heat in parts of the region this week.

Based on the current weather forecast, temperatures are expected to soar into the 90s beginning today and continuing through the week. Forecasters say the combination of high heat and humidity levels could lead to a heat index as high as 105 degrees in some areas, especially on Wednesday and Thursday.

“Demand for energy spikes considerably whenever we see extreme heat similar to what we’re expected to experience this week as air conditioners are often working overtime. In fact, here in New England, the hottest days of the year typically result in the highest electrical loads regionally,” said Unitil External Affairs Director Alec O’Meara. “It’s important to note that the cost of energy is highest when demand for electricity peaks during the 3 to 8 p.m. time period. Reducing energy usage during peak times now has the potential to lower energy costs in the future so we strongly encourage homeowners, renters and business owners to take steps to ease that demand whenever possible.”

One way to save energy while staying cool and comfortable is to install an ENERGY STAR certified room air conditioner, which uses approximately 20% less energy than a non-certified one depending on the product class. It’s also important to make sure that the unit is the proper size for the room as many people buy units that are too large, resulting in wasted energy. ENERGY STAR certified dehumidifiers remove the same amount of moisture but are also much more energy efficient than conventional units.

The following are other tips that can help reduce energy consumption during periods of intense heat:

  • Use a programmable thermostat to control air-conditioning more effectively.
  • Pre-cool your home midday when solar production is at its highest rather than during peak hours
  • Clean or replace air conditioner filters to improve the efficiency of the unit and prolong its lifespan.
  • Close and lock windows and pull shades or blinds, especially on windows facing south and/or west to block the summer light.
  • Use a ceiling fan to create a draft to cool a room and reduce energy usage as an alternative to air conditioning
  • Avoid use of other major appliances such as dishwashers or laundry machines during peak usage times

As New Englanders find ways to stay cool during the upcoming heat wave, O’Meara stressed the importance of not relying too heavily on any one option and planning for an alternative means in the event of a power outage. He also urged customers to take the necessary precautions to avoid heat exhaustion and other heat-related illnesses over the next few days.

For more information on energy efficiency initiatives and rebates, click here.


About Unitil

Unitil Corporation provides energy for life by safely and reliably delivering electricity and natural gas in New England. We are committed to the communities we serve and to developing people, business practices, and technologies that lead to the delivery of dependable, more efficient energy. Unitil Corporation is a public utility holding company with operations in Maine, New Hampshire and Massachusetts. Together, Unitil’s operating utilities serve approximately 108,500 electric customers and 88,400 natural gas customers.


Media Contact

Alec O'Meara
Director, External Affairs