Frequently Asked Questions: Electric Department

1. What consumes electricity?
2. How can I consume less electricity?
3. How do I estimate my appliance and home electronic energy use?
4. Why is my electric consumption so high?
5. When is my electric meter read?
6. Why are some of my lights off?
7. What should I do if all of my lights are off?
8. How can I report a streetlight that is not working?
9. Why are there flags or colored lines in my yard?
10. I need to dig a trench for a mailbox, wash line, etc. How do I know where my underground lines are?
11. How do I know that the electric crewman at my home is from the Borough of Kutztown?
12. If there is an emergency, where can I find out more information?


1. What consumes electricity?

Items that consume electricity include, but are not limited to, electric heat, gas or oil heat blower/circulator motors, stoves, space heaters, refrigerators, toasters, microwaves, electric can openers, computers, flat/regular screen TVs, electric hot water heaters, lights that plug in, radios, computer power cords, cell phone power cords, routers, ceiling/other fans, heated water beds, hair dryers, curling irons/hot curlers, alarm clocks, clothes dryers, dehumidifiers, humidifiers , aquariums , electric blankets, leaking hot water faucets (makes hot water heater work harder), coffeemakers, and exercise equipment that plugs in (ex: treadmill).

Even if an item is turned off, it still may be consuming electricity if it is plugged in. Using a power strip that can be switched off when not in use may be an option to consider.

2. How can I consume less electricity?

There are many ways to conserve energy and lower your electric bill. For tips and suggestions visit Energy Conservation or Reducing Your Electricity (energy.gov).
 

3. How do I estimate my appliance and home electronic energy use?

If you’re trying to decide whether to invest in a more energy-efficient appliance or you’d like to determine your electricity loads, you may want to estimate appliance energy consumption here (energy.gov)

4. Why is my electric consumption so high?

If you continually have concerns, we have the ability to graph your electric consumption by the week, day and hour and pinpoint your usage. Contact the Electric department at 610-683-3202 or view your hourly usage online.

5. When is my electric meter read?

Meters are read electronically and reported daily by our automatic reader system.

6. Why are some of my lights off?

One of your breakers may have tripped, or a fuse may have blown:

1a. Check if any breakers have been tripped (it will be in the center position or the button of the middle will be protruding). Flip the breaker switch to the “off” position then back to the “on” position.

1b. If you have fuses, the glass on the blown fuse may look smoky rather than clear. If the fuse is to blame, it will need to be replaced.

2. If no breakers have been tripped, and/or your neighbors are also without power, please report the issue to the Electric department at 610-683-3202.

7. What should I do if all of my lights are off?

1. First, check if your neighbors’ lights are still on. Then check if any of your breakers have been tripped or if a fuse has been blown (See previous question for details).

2. If no breakers have been tripped, and/or your neighbors are also without power, please report the issue to the Electric department at 610-683-3202.

8. How can I report a streetlight that is not working?

Please report street light outages to the Electric department at 610-683-3202 so that we are aware of the problem and can fix the light in a timely fashion.

9. Why are there flags or colored lines in my yard?

Pennsylvania state law requires utility facilities to be located before digging any type of trench. The color of the flag or line determines what type of utility is being marked. Click here to view the color key or for more information visit www.pa1call.org.

10. I need to dig a trench for a mailbox, wash line, etc. How do I know where my underground lines are?

Homeowners (or hired excavators) must contact the Pennsylvania One Call System (Dial 811 or visit www.pa1call.org) three business days before digging a trench on their property. All impacted utility companies will be contacted and required to mark the underground lines at no charge within the next three business days. Please do not call the Borough or other utility provider directly. Learn more in the Pennsylvania One Call System FAQs.

11. How do I know that the electric crewman at my home is from the Borough of Kutztown?

Please request ID from anyone asking to enter your home.

12. If there is an emergency, where can I find out more information?

Make sure you have signed up for the Public Notification System in the event of an emergency with the water system. The Borough of Kutztown’s website, local radio stations, local TV stations, Home Net channel 2, and newspaper will also offer coverage.