Coldest Spell in Years: Let’s Conserve Hot Water

Vala Hafstað

It looks like the coming days will bring one of the coldest spells since 2013 to Southwest Iceland. Temperatures Saturday morning will be as low as minus 11°C (12°F) Saturday in the Southwest and much lower elsewhere.

As a result, Veitur, the utility company that distributes water in Southwest Iceland, has activated a contingency plan for the coming days.

Such a plan was enacted on December 6, 2013, when hot water usage in the capital area reached 16,000 m3 an hour. The temperature dropped to minus 10°C, with a wind chill of minus 18. By comparison, water usage generally measures 10,000 m3 an hour when the temperature is a few degrees above 0°C.

Based on weather forecasts, it looks like hot water usage in the capital area will reach capacity on Friday and through the weekend. About 90 percent of the hot water supply is used for heating houses, making it essential for residents to be aware of how they can conserve water to prevent shortages.

Veitur encourages residents to save water in the following ways:

Keep windows closed

When going in and out of your home, don’t keep the door open longer than necessary

Don’t use hot tubs

Set your radiators in a way that they’re hot at the top and cold at the bottom

Avoid blocking the radiators, for example with long curtains or with furniture

Reduce pressure on snow-melting systems

This contingency plan will be in effect Friday through Sunday.

Weather

Cloudy

Today

-2 °C

Overcast

Later today

-2 °C

Overcast

Tomorrow

-1 °C

Warning: Yellow More