Power outages reported in Central Florida; utility providers have extra resources ready

Utility companies offer money-saving tips during cold weather

By Emilee Speck - Digital journalist

ORLANDO, Fla. - Central Florida power companies say they are prepared with extra resources to heat homes and restore power Wednesday as temperatures in some areas dip below freezing causing outages.

Orlando Utility Co. officials said the company is ready to provide extra power for heating during the cold front and extra crews are standing by to respond to power outages.

A Duke Energy spokesperson said the company has sufficient resources to meet its customers' energy needs, but the low temperatures will put a higher stress on equipment, which could create scattered outages.

There were some power outages reported across Central Florida.

More than 1,000 Kissimmee Utility Authority customers in the Lakeside and Buenaventura Lakes area experienced a power outage Wednesday morning. KUA officials said the power was restored to all affected customers by 10:57 a.m., but the cause of the outage was still being investigated.

Duke Energy 
-Orange County: 2,352
-Seminole County: 1,886

FPL
-Brevard County: 3,714
-Seminole County: 1,338
-Volusia County: 1,084


How to stay warm and save money

Representatives from Duke Energy and Orlando Utility Co. also offered tips to help residents save money on their utility bills, which could see a spike.

  • When the heat is on set your thermostat to 68 degrees. "For each degree above 68, the heating portion of your bill will increase 4 to 6 percent," according to an OUC news release.
  • Leave the drapes or blinds open when the sun is shining on cold days to warm the house, but close them at night to keep the heat in.
  • Use compact fluorescent light bulbs  or light emitting diodes, which are more energy efficient than regular bulbs and give off the same amount of light.
  • Change air filters regularly. A dirty air filter makes a heating system work harder, using more energy, according to Duke Energy.
  • Turn ceiling fans on the clockwise direction to push warm air down into the room.
  • In below freezing temperatures, cover any exposed water pipes and leave pool pumps running.
  • Check door and window areas for cool air coming in and seal those areas.

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