Be Alert for Peak Alerts

Learn about the ways you can help save during Peak Alerts.


Peak Alerts are issued when the demand for electricity is high and rising toward a peak. They typically occur on hot summer days from approximately 2 to 7 p.m., but can also occur in extremely cold temperatures. We ask our members to reduce their energy consumption during this time in order to help avoid reaching a new peak. If you have a radio-controlled switch on your water heater or a Cool Returns switch on your central air conditioning system, it will be activated during Peak Alerts.*

Avoiding a new electric demand peak is important. When a new peak is established, it may affect future transmission and generation costs. A Peak Alert does not indicate a shortage of electricity; it is a way for members to help hold down electric costs.

*A Cool Returns switch is only activated during summer Peak Alerts.

How do I know if there is a Peak Alert?

When the cooperative is notified that the demand for electricity is reaching an all-time high, we inform members by email, text, and/or voice message (if provided) and post the Peak Alert message on SmartHub, our Facebook page and on the front page of our website.

See the ways you can help during a Peak Alert below.

A radio-controlled switch can be installed on electric water heaters that are 50 gallons or more. During the peak alert, the elements on the water heater are shut off. Members receive a $4 credit on their bill each month for having a radio-controlled switch installed. We currently have over 5,500 members that have a water heater radio-controlled switch installed. A RCS wired to a water heater is typically located on the breaker panel or directly on the water heater. Left, a radio-controlled switch wired to a water heater.

A radio-controlled switch can be installed on central air conditioners, heat pumps and geothermal systems. During a peak alert, the compressor is cycled off and on for brief periods of time. Members receive a $100 one-time bill credit for having a Cool Returns switch installed and a $2 credit on their bill each month. A Cool Returns switch is typically located next to the air conditioning unit. Right, a radio-controlled switch wired to a heat pump.

  • Adjust your thermostat. Raise your thermostat 2-5 degrees if it's a summer peak alert or lower your thermostat 2-5 degrees if it's a winter peak alert.
  • Turn off lights in the home.
  • Postpone household chores that use electricity (such as laundry, dishes, and baths or showers).
  • Avoid charging an electric vehicle.

These are just a few changes that members can implement to help reduce energy consumption during a peak.