smart grid

ComEd continues efforts to upgrade its power distribution system to improve reliability as winter approaches.According to a release, ComEd said that it has continued its work  through the year to create an advanced power distribution system, improving reliability and building smart grid infrastructure for the future.

From 2012, through to September this year, more than 7.3 million customer interruptions have been avoided, thanks in part to ComEd’s work to modernise the grid. [ComEd boosts consumer awareness on energy efficiency]

The release adds that installation of technology including more than 230 smart switches that reroute power around problem areas and tree resistant cables that storm harden the system have contributed to more than 1.5 million avoided power interruptions in 2016 alone.

ComEd ranks in grid modernisation index

[quote] The utility’s smart grid upgrades has resulted in Illinois’ recent ranking of 2nd nationally in the 2015 Grid Modernisation Index, a national report produced by the GridWise Alliance and the Smart Grid Policy Centre.

Terrence R. Donnelly, executive vice-president and COO, commented: “The work we’ve done to modernize the electric grid is essential to meeting the increased electricity needs of our customers during the coldest months of the year. This work begins months in advance and helps us meet the increased demand for energy, when our customers need it the most.” [DR programme saves $1.2m for ComEd customers]

ComEd has provided recommendations to help customers safely prepare their homes for winter weather, manage their energy usage and reduce electricity costs.

These include:

  • Set the home’s thermostat up to 10 degrees lower during the winter, when you leave your home and before going to sleep. You could save up to 10% a year on heating.
  • Checking HVAC filters every month. If the filter looks dirty after a month, change it. A dirty filter will slow down air flow and make the system work harder to keep you warm thus wasting energy.
  • Replacing conventional incandescent holiday lights with LEDs (lighting emitting diode). LEDs typically consume about 75% less and can last up to 10 times longer. They’re also more durable, shock-resistant and generate less heat compared to traditional incandescent light strands.
  • Inspect the caulking and weather-stripping around all windows, doors and openings for utility services, replacing as necessary. Also, check ducts that move air to-and-from a forced air furnace, central air conditioner, or heat pump, which are often big energy wasters. ComEd offers a rebate program for several weatherization products.
  • Take advantage of the home energy savings available through the ComEd Smart Ideas Energy Efficiency Programme. Get a free home energy assessment; receive rebates on weatherization and qualifying appliances and smart thermostats, and save instantly with in-store discounts on LEDs and more.