Glacial Energy Blog

The Speed of Electricity

The speed of electricity and the speed of light are the same. Light and electricity are able to travel at an amazing 186,000 miles per second. It can be difficult for anyone to wrap one’s head around just how fast this really is.

An Example to Help Illustrate the Speed of Electricity

One good example is to think of the speed of electricity in the following way. Imagine that you have a light bulb on the moon and you have a light switch in your living room down on earth. Now imagine that you have a telescope powerful enough to see that little light bulb that’s 238,857 miles away. Reach over and flip the switch. It’s only going to take 1.26 seconds for that bulb to illuminate. That’s exactly how long it takes for light or electricity to reach the moon from the earth.

Of course, we don’t really have light bulbs on the moon, but it does serve to illustrate the point. Once you know that the speed of light and therefore electricity is a constant (unless there is resistance), it’s easy to calculate just how long it would take electricity to travel anywhere in the world, or universe for that matter.

Knowing just how fast electricity is able to move when unimpeded also helps make it easier to understand just how and why our lamps and other devices are able to work instantaneously.

Is It Fast Enough?

One of the questions that some people have is whether the electricity is moving fast enough, and how might it be possible to make it go faster. If it is moving at the speed of light though, how could it possibly move faster? Most believe that the speed of light is the actual speed limit in the laws of the universe. That might be the case, but when you are talking about electricity in devices, things can get a bit tricky. It’s true that it travels at the speed of light, and in many electric devices such as computers, it does not have to flow very far at all.

However, the wires in the computers are going to create resistance, and this is going to slow the current slightly. This, along with transistors and other components mean that the electricity that we have – even though it has the potential – travels through the devices and the machines at a slightly slower speed.

Engineers and specialists are always trying to find ways to speed things up, but even so, electricity does flow rather quickly today! One should not have to worry that the electricity in their laptop isn’t flowing at light speed! They are generally going to be fast enough, and you are not going to realize that there is a slowdown at all.

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About Glacial Energy: Glacial Energy is one of the fastest growing national retail energy suppliers selling electricity and natural gas to residential, commercial, industrial, and institutional customers in deregulated markets across the country. Glacial Energy has the resources and market knowledge to provide customized quotes for your business or cost-saving opportunities for your home. Learn more about Glacial Energy by visiting: www.GlacialEnergy.com.

What City Uses the Most Electricity?

Have you ever wondered which cities in the United States and around the world are using the most electricity? Quite a few different things are going to factor into the amount of energy that a city uses, but some cities just seem to suck up the power more than others do. Las Vegas, for example, takes quite a bit of electricity given the fact that it has all of the lights, gaming machines, and hotels concentrated into such a small area. One also has to consider the air conditioning costs for the hotels, as well as all of the residential homes in the area.

In an article in Forbes from 2007, experts stated that the city was using 5,600MW on warm summer days, and they expected that this number would go up to about 8,000MW per day by 2015.  The crazy thing is, this is a conservative estimate and the actual numbers may, in fact, be much higher. This is a huge number, and you can see why many are starting to look for alternative forms of energy that they can use. This will lower the demand on the grid, and using renewable energy sources is simply going to be better for the environment.

Not Only Sin City

While Las Vegas is the major power consumer in the country, the city is certainly not the only one that draws a substantial amount of power. Look at many of the larger cities in the country, such as New York City and Chicago, and you will find that they use massive amounts of power as well. Areas where it is very hot in the summer, such as Phoenix and many cities in Texas, have high usage as well.

Of course, the United States is not alone when it comes to their massive consumption of power. Cities around the world, such as Paris and Tokyo can be power hungry as well. Changes to these cities, thanks to other types of energy, will start to lower their use of traditional power. This is something that all cities around the world are going to need to consider.

Change is Necessary

Looking for different types of energy is going to be important for many cities in the coming years. The cost of traditional electricity is going to rise, and they need to find other methods by which they will be able to generate all of the power that they need. For those cities that consume a large deal of power, this can be tricky. Investing in things such as solar power and wind power will be able to curb some of the demand from the grid, and this is a good thing. Businesses and residences in places such as Las Vegas should consider some of the benefits that solar energy, for example, will be able to provide. They certainly have enough sunshine!

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About Glacial Energy: Glacial Energy is one of the fastest growing national retail energy suppliers selling electricity and natural gas to residential, commercial, industrial, and institutional customers in deregulated markets across the country. Glacial Energy has the resources and market knowledge to provide customized quotes for your business or cost-saving opportunities for your home. Learn more about Glacial Energy by visiting: www.GlacialEnergy.com.

 

Glacial Energy: The REP That Cares

When you look for a retail energy provider (REP), what qualities do you look for?  Low rates?  Exceptional customer service?  Good for the environment?  Gives back to the community?  No matter which of these points is the most important to you, Glacial Energy is the answer.  Glacial Energy helps its consumers potentially save 10 – 20% annually while providing exceptional customer service and green power.  We also pride ourselves on giving back to local communities.

Glacial Energy cares about you by offering you competitive energy rates.  After the deregulation of energy in different parts of the U.S., you no longer have to buy your energy from the local utility.  You now have the freedom to choose whichever energy provider is offering you the best rates and services.  Glacial Energy offers you the ability to purchase your electricity and natural gas potentially at a more competitive and affordable price.  We create customized energy plans just for your business and can potentially offer you some of the lowest prices in the market.  These low prices aren’t just limited to businesses either; they’re also for residential customers so, no matter what, you save money.

We care about your questions and concerns.  Thus, we only hire well-trained and experienced customer service representatives so all your questions, queries, and problems are responded to and dealt with in a timely manner.  Your satisfaction is our top priority so whenever you have a concern, give us a call at 1-888-GLACIAL or message us through our website here and we’ll get back to you as quickly as possible.

Glacial Energy is also excited to offer green energy.  Our renewable energy credits are certified by Green-e, which is the nation’s leading independent certification and verification program for renewable energy.  This solidifies the trust you can place in us and how we do business.

To express how much we care about the different communities we reside and do business in, we created the program called Glacial Cares.  One of the goals of Glacial Energy’s “Glacial Cares� program is to promote community advancement and to improve the lives of those within your local area. We strive to enhance local charitable programs by redirecting a portion of the money spent on electricity or natural gas back into the communities from which it is derived.  Glacial Energy will contribute, on your behalf to a charity of your choice.

In short, we at Glacial Energy love our customers and we do everything we can to be the responsible, friendly energy provider that you deserve to have.  For complete details on any of the programs mentioned, please visit www.glacialenergy.com.

Sources:  How Glacial Saves Money for Businesses (Video), http://www.glacialenergy.com

About Glacial Energy: Glacial Energy is one of the fastest growing national retail energy suppliers selling electricity and natural gas to residential, commercial, industrial, and institutional customers in deregulated markets across the country. Glacial Energy has the resources and market knowledge to provide customized quotes for your business or cost-saving opportunities for your home. Learn more about Glacial Energy by visiting: www.GlacialEnergy.com

10 Energy Saving Tips for Your Business

The cost of energy always seems to be rising and in response, people are always looking for ways to save on their electricity bill.  When you have a business that uses a substantial amount of energy each month, it becomes even more important for you to find some ways to reduce your overall costs.  Here are ten very good ways that you can do just that.

Conduct an Audit

You can conduct an audit of your own business so that you can get a better idea of where and how you are using the most energy.  Knowing where your business’s weaknesses are when it comes to energy usage will help you with the next tip on this list.

Monitor Your Bills

Always make sure that you are looking at your bills closely each month and learn which days you are using the most energy.  Look into curbing your usage on those days (if possible). Monitoring can help you gauge this more accurately.

Reduce A/C and Heating Usage

Make sure that you are not keeping your air conditioner or heater running when no one is in the building.  If you don’t have people coming into work until 7AM, it makes no sense to have the same heating and cooling settings overnight as you do during the day.  Adjust them. Also, keep the blinds shut during the day, which keeps the heat out in the summer. Do the opposite in the winter.

Replace Your Bulbs

It’s always a good idea to change from old bulbs that use high energy to the energy efficient bulbs (like CFLs).  They use less power and they last much longer, which can help you save quite a bit.

Turn Off the Lights

Instill the importance of turning off lights when no one is in the room.  This is important for offices, as well as break rooms and bathrooms.  For some rooms, it might be a good idea to install a motion sensor that will shut off the light when no one is in the room.

Energy Saving Appliances

Always look for energy saving machines when it comes to copiers and printers, but don’t forget about the appliances in your break room as well.  Look for high quality coffee pots and refrigerators that have a good energy efficiency rating.

Better Insulation

Have professionals come out and check to see if the insulation you have at your business is sufficient to help you save energy.

Generate Your Own Power

Some companies are starting to use solar panels to help them generate all or at least a portion of their energy. This could be a good solution for your business as well.

Turn Off Computers

At the end of the day, make sure that everyone turns off their computers and monitors, as they take up energy even when they’re not running.

Programmable Thermostats

Having a good programmable thermostat will make it easier for you to keep the temperatures at the perfect setting no matter the time of year.

Source: 10 Ways to Save on Your Business Energy Bill

About Glacial Energy: Glacial Energy is one of the fastest growing national retail energy suppliers selling electricity and natural gas to residential, commercial, industrial, and institutional customers in deregulated markets across the country. Glacial Energy has the resources and market knowledge to provide customized quotes for your business or cost-saving opportunities for your home. Learn more about Glacial Energy by visiting: www.GlacialEnergy.com

Party Decoration Tip: Use Black Lights

If you are in a mood for some festive lighting for your next party, how about using black lighting instead of the same old white lighting?  Black lights are a great way to illuminate your home and to change the ambience of a room for a party or a special occasion.  Some people tend to use black lights for their everyday use as it creates a unique setting.  Replacing white lights with black lights is very simple and easy.  Black lights use the same amount of energy as white lights so there is no cost difference.

Black lights reflect off objects in a very different manner than standard bulbs.  Black lights will make some colors appear more difficult to see, while they’ll help other colors and shades to stand out even more than they normally would.  It emits a long ultraviolet wave and makes florescent paints look spectacular.  Generally, lighter and brighter colors will be even more light and bright, while darker colors will tend to fade into the background under black lights. By using the proper paints and shades, colors will be best able to shine through the dark light that is produced by the bulbs.

In order to create a proper ambiance, you don’t even need to replace all of your standard bulbs with black lights.  In fact, only one or two bulbs will be sufficient for creating the unique appearance that you hope to achieve in your room.  Even for parties, you can use a few black lights and with the proper wall color and objects in the room, you can achieve just the right look. It might be a nice idea to hang some paintings or designs using florescent paints to give the room a unique look.  Also, adding glow sticks and glow-in-the-dark material will also stand out and be more cost efficient.

Keep in mind that it’s not advisable to use black lighting for regular use as they tend to overheat quicker than standard light bulbs and may burn out or run the risk of catching on fire if left on for too long.  Because these bulbs are more expensive than standard light bulbs, you’ll save money by using them sparingly.

Source: DIY: Decorating with Black Lights

About Glacial Energy: Glacial Energy is one of the fastest growing national retail energy suppliers selling electricity and natural gas to residential, commercial, industrial, and institutional customers in deregulated markets across the country. Glacial Energy has the resources and market knowledge to provide customized quotes for your business or cost-saving opportunities for your home. Learn more about Glacial Energy by visiting: www.GlacialEnergy.com

Cost-friendly home heating

There are many ways to heat your home during the winter. Heating your home accounts for about 40 percent of your energy bill so it is important to use cost-friendly home heating options. There are a variety of options available to heat your house.

Solar heating:

Active solar heating systems use solar energy to heat a fluid — either liquid or air — and then transfer the solar heat directly to the interior space or to a storage system for later use. Air collectors can be installed on a roof or an exterior (south-facing) wall for heating one or more rooms. The collector has an airtight and insulated metal frame and a black metal plate for absorbing heat. Solar radiation heats the plate that then heats the air in the collector. An electric fan or blower pulls air from the room through the collector and then blows it back in to the room.

Electric resistance heating:

If electricity is the only choice heat pumps are preferable in most climates because they easily cut electricity use by 50 percent when compared with electric resistance heating. If you live in dry climate areas such as West Texas there are so few heating days that the high cost of heating is not economically significant.

Furnaces and boilers:

Most homes in the U.S. are heated with either furnaces or boilers. Furnaces heat air and distribute the heated air through the house using ducts. Boilers heat water and provide either hot water or steam for heating. Steam is distributed via pipes to steam radiators and hot water can be distributed via baseboard radiators, radiant floor systems or can heat air via a coil.

Steam Radiator: Steam heating is one of the oldest heating technologies, but the process of boiling and condensing water is inherently less efficient than more modern systems. In addition, there tends to be significant lag times between the boiler turning on and the heat arriving in the radiators.

Hot water radiator: Hot-water radiators are one of the most common heat distribution systems in newer homes, second only to forced-air systems. They are typically a baseboard-type radiator or an upright design that resembles steam radiators. Hot water leaves the furnace and moves in a continuous loop, returning back to the furnace as cooler water where it is then reheated.

Source: Energy.Gov

About Glacial Energy- Glacial Energy is one of the fastest growing national retail energy suppliers selling electricity and natural gas to residential, commercial, industrial, and institutional customers in deregulated markets across the country. Glacial Energy has the resources and market knowledge to provide customized quotes for your business or cost-saving opportunities for your home. Learn more about Glacial Energy by visiting: www.GlacialEnergy.com


How to conserve energy around your bathroom

In winter we all want out bathrooms to be warm and cozy. A warm bathroom provides us an incentive to get out of that comfy bed and it also gives us a boost in getting ready for work. But keeping your bathroom comfortable also requires a shocking amount of electricity. Hot water, ventilation fans, light fixtures and leaky plumbing are just a few sources of how energy is consumed in our bathrooms. Just what material you use and how you use them can cost you much more than what you expected.

Heating water can add up to a quarter of your energy bill, so conserving your hot water will help you save money. Adjust the temperature of the hot water so it is warm and not scalding hot. This can decrease your energy bill substantially. Another tip is to insulate your water heater and pipes so they heat water faster. Placing foam insulation on your water pipes will go a long way in cutting your hot water cost. Flow-restricting shower heads also save you money as they tend to reduce the amount of water used. Taking short showers instead of long baths also helps save some cash.

During the summer it is crucial to use the bathroom’s ventilation fan and to bring fresh air back in, but in winter it is better that the steam and moisture flows around the house. It is advisable to keep a small fan by your bathroom door to drive the hot air from the bathroom and in to the rest of your home.

Using proper lights in your bathroom is also very important. Compact Fluorescent Bulbs (CFLs) use only 25 percent of the power incandescent light bulbs use and provide the same amount of light. Not only do they use less electricity but they also have a longer life span. It is also important to use energy star hair dryers and hair straighteners because they consume less energy. Ceramic hair dryers are also more energy efficient than rickety old hair dryers, so investing in an eco friendly hair dryer can help you save money.

Leaky faucets and toilets not only add to your water bill but also to your energy bill. When you have leaking hot water your heater has to heat more water and thus it wastes energy. So it is better to get your leaky faucets fixed quickly because it will save you money on your next utility bill.

Source: Home Energy Team

About Glacial Energy- Glacial Energy is one of the fastest growing national retail energy suppliers selling electricity and natural gas to residential, commercial, industrial, and institutional customers in deregulated markets across the country. Glacial Energy has the resources and market knowledge to provide customized quotes for your business or cost-saving opportunities for your home. Learn more about Glacial Energy by visiting: www.GlacialEnergy.com

Teach kids saving energy is fun

I don’t know about you, but when I was growing up my parents never missed a chance to lecture about wasting energy. As often as elders lecture, children don’t always pick up on their key points. Kids like to have fun, so why not make saving energy a game? Here are a few ideas you can use with your children to help them understand how to conserve power.

I spy ghost electronics: Instead of a regular “I Spy� game, in which your child tries to guess what you see, why not ask them to help you find all the ghost electronics in the house that suck power even when they are not in use. This way they will also understand to unplug their games and electronics when finished.

Planned power outages: Have a planned power outage in your house to make your children understand and realize what the effects of power failure are and why it is so important to conserve energy. This activity can be made fun by having candle light dinners and game nights. This can also include some family time because all the electronics such as TV, video games and computers will not be on. This will also make them realize that life can also exist without technology.

The jar game: Many parents use a “curse jar� that family members add to whenever they use a bad word. You could try using the same technique for members who waste energy and forget to turn off the lights or television. After a couple of offenses, not only will your children become more careful in conserving electricity, but so will you. This will also have a positive effect on your next energy bill.

Online games: As crazy as it sounds there are many educational games out there that teach your kids how to conserve energy. These games are not only fun but also are very educational. Some examples of these websites include energyhog.org, eere.energy.gov/kids or eia.doe.gov/kids.

Source:  http://www.ehow.com/way_5246719_fun-ways-kids-save-energy.html

About Glacial Energy- Glacial Energy is one of the fastest growing national retail energy suppliers selling electricity and natural gas to residential, commercial, industrial, and institutional customers in deregulated markets across the country. Glacial Energy has the resources and market knowledge to provide customized quotes for your business or cost-saving opportunities for your home. Learn more about Glacial Energy by visiting: www.GlacialEnergy.com

TV fan- You can save energy while watching your favorite shows.

We are American and we love to watch TV. Two, three or four hours of TV is the norm for many. Weekends often mean a television and video game marathon. Here are a couple of ways to still enjoy TV while reducing energy consumption.

  1. Invite some friends over when you want to watch TV. Why watch television alone? The more the merrier. This way you will save energy because only one TV will be on. Pop some popcorn and make an evening of it.
  2. Check the brightness of your TV. The brighter your TV the more energy it consumes. Each TV has a brightness setting so check yours and if you think it’s not bright enough just turn off one of your lights and it will look better.
  3. Check the volume of your TV. The louder the volume is, the more energy is consumed. Also check the mega sound system. You really may not need it unless you are watching a big production movie.
  4. Turn off all the other perihelia you are not using, such as your DVD player, Blu-Ray or Wii. They don’t need to be on constantly. DVD players and game systems are notorious energy hogs, often sucking power out of the wall even when they are in standby mode.
  5. Turn off the TV when you leave the room. You don’t need the TV on when you want to use the restroom or make yourself a sandwich. It’s ok to let the TV rest for a while. You can turn it back on later. You also shouldn’t sleep with the television on because not only does it disturb your sleep, but it also wastes loads of energy.
  6. Use a power strip and plug all your TV accessories in it. This way you will only need to turn off one switch, which is a lot easier to remember.
  7. Read a book instead. Yes I know a book cannot replace a TV show but many shows are based on books, so why not read the original version instead.

Source: http://www.greenhandsusa.com/tips/page:10237

About Glacial Energy- Glacial Energy is one of the fastest growing national retail energy suppliers selling electricity and natural gas to residential, commercial, industrial, and institutional customers in deregulated markets across the country. Glacial Energy has the resources and market knowledge to provide customized quotes for your business or cost-saving opportunities for your home. Learn more about Glacial Energy by visiting: www.GlacialEnergy.com

 

Gas standby Generators- Is it for you?

We’ve come across a number of storms that have caused power outages—Sandy, Isaac, Ike, Rita and Katrina caused billions of dollars in damage and left entire cities without powers for days or weeks on end. Living without power during (or after) a hurricane is the norm. Those who have suffered a blackout realize what convenience electricity is and how difficult it is to live without power. A standby gas generator might seem to be too farfetched, but if you have suffered a blackout recently, you know how important it is to have an emergency generator to power your home. People are now installing home standby generators in record numbers to protect their families and investments.

Selecting a home standby generator system is simple. You pick a standby generator and an automatic transfer switch in a bundled package. Standby generators are rated by kilowatts, which basically measures the machine’s strength and endurance.

When you are looking to buy a generator, you need to decide what strength it should have. In order to decide which one will be more suitable for you, first think if you will require air conditioning during the blackout. If you live in a southern state like Texas, living without air conditioning during the sweltering months of summer is next to impossible. If you living in the north you might want to skip the air conditioning and save some cash. If you want to run your central air conditioner, you need a strong generator capable of turning over a high-powered motor. If you skimp on strength, don’t expect it to start. The basic rule of thumb when looking for a generator is to buy based on the amount of electricity you expect to use, with or without using the air conditioning.

The next item you need to check before buying a generator is endurance. You are buying a standby generator to replace the electricity lost from the utility company. If your electric panel has a 200-amp main breaker, the maximum amount of electricity your home can consume is 200 amps. If you have 100-amp service, it’s 100-amps. Now we know that no one ever uses the maximum amount of electricity. Your consumption will be somewhere between 0 and your maximum. Finding a generator is easy,  it is a must that you read the installation and safety manual in detail. It is recommended that you have the generator professionally installed if you are not tech savvy. If you are going to have a transfer switch, you need a licensed electrician to install it.

So you probably don’t need a 200-amp generator and you don’t use that amount of energy anyways. Instead, determine how much of your electric panel you want to energize.

You may be one of many running out to buy a generator, but remember to keep these key tips in mind so that your purchase is a wise one.

Source: http://www.electricgeneratorsdirect.com/stories/36-How-to-Pick-the-Perfect-Home-Standby-Generator.html

About Glacial Energy- Glacial Energy is one of the fastest growing national retail energy suppliers selling electricity and natural gas to residential, commercial, industrial, and institutional customers in deregulated markets across the country. Glacial Energy has the resources and market knowledge to provide customized quotes for your business or cost-saving opportunities for your home. Learn more about Glacial Energy by visiting: www.GlacialEnergy.com

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