Adjust Your AC Tech Not Your Thermostat

by Alex Collins, Co-COO, Ice Energy

When temperatures are high, we crank up the air conditioning to make our homes and offices more comfortable. This increased demand for electricity creates a huge problem for the electricity grid.

During a heat wave, you will often hear notifications called Flex Alerts from your utility provider or the California Independent System Operator (known as Cal ISO). Cal ISO calls a Flex Alert to encourage residents to voluntarily reduce their energy use to help protect the grid and prevent power outages.

When a Flex Alert is called, Cal ISO recommends taking the following steps:

  • Set your air conditioner to 78° or higher, if health permits
  • Postpone using major appliances until after 9:00 p.m.
  • Turn off all unnecessary lights

But what if your air conditioner could “charge” at night when electricity demand is low? Or that extra energy being produced by the solar panels on your roof could be stored and used to cool your home later in the day when the sun goes down? Both are possible with intelligent, thermal energy storage air conditioning.

You don’t have to sacrifice comfort in your home by setting your thermostat higher, you simply need a smarter air conditioner. Ice Energy’s Ice Bear thermal storage air conditioning units store energy by creating ice from tap water when energy costs and demand are low. As the ice melts,  it powers air conditioning at the times when you need to cool your home and energy costs are higher.

Before the next FlexAlert, consider installing intelligent air conditioning and skip the thermostat adjustments. You’ll already be using energy more efficiently, while staying cool and saving money.