Save energy during cold, Duke Energy says

Duke Energy again asked its Carolinas customers to cut back on their electricity use during the unusual cold that’s expected Thursday night and Friday morning.

About 40,000 customers in the two states had no power Thursday morning, when the temperature dipped to a record-tying 8 degrees in Charlotte. Duke reported 39 outages in the Carolinas by 6 p.m. Thursday.

Energy conservation helps avoid excessive demand on the power grid during cold weather, which affects electrical equipment.

Duke’s conservation tips: Lower thermostat settings; turn off unneeded lights; delay household chores that use appliances; unplug cell phone and tablet chargers; set ceiling fans to rotate clockwise; and open drapes to let in sunlight during the day.

The National Weather Service expects a Thursday night low of 17 degrees, rising to 41 on Friday.