‘We got to keep it cool’: With the start of summer, San Antonio area businesses prepare for extreme heat

SCHERTZ, Texas – If you take a step inside Randy G’s Ice Cream shop, Texas starts to feel like a tropical paradise. But even in this local getaway, it’s hard to escape the San Antonio-area heat.

“We just conserve as much as we can, but we got to keep it cool,” Randy Gentry said.

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June 1 marks the start of meteorological summer, and in South Central Texas, that means extreme heat. High temperatures are nothing new for San Antonio and surrounding cities, but the Electric Reliability Council of Texas said now is the time to start preparing for the summer season.

ERCOT’s top tips for energy conservation among residents and households during the summer months are:

  • Raising your home thermostat a degree or two
  • Avoiding the usage of large appliances
  • Turning off any non-essential lights
  • Setting all pool pumps to shut off during peak hours

“With the load of growth that this state has seen really over the last several years it just puts a lot of pressure on the grid when you have hotter than normal weather,” said Christian Nagel, the Director of Power Supply with Rayburn Electric Cooperative.

That’s why Gentry has had to create a line of defense in his shop against the heat. He uses a wall of freezers and fans to keep his cool treat actually cold.

“I’ve used every plug I possibly can,” Gentry said.

And even then, it’s not a perfect plan. A recent power surge caused some of his freezers to shut down for hours. But in a state like Texas, the heat is no surprise. Gentry said he just has to keep pushing through and keep the freezers closed for as long as he can.

To read more safety tips from ERCOT ahead of the extreme heat expected this summer, click here.

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