Locked out of thermostat: 22,000 people lose control of temperatures in their homes for hours during energy emergency in Colorado


Private corporations are now controlling your house thermostat during energy “emergencies”. Just wait until it’s mandatory for all homes…

Thousands of Xcel customers locked out of thermostats during 'energy emergency' 22,000 people lost control of temperatures in their homes for hours Tuesday
Thousands of Xcel customers locked out of thermostats during ‘energy emergency’. 22,000 people lost control of temperatures in their homes for hours Tuesday. Picture via Denver Channel

During the dog days of summer, it’s important to keep your home cool. But when thousands of Xcel customers in Colorado tried adjusting their thermostats Tuesday, they learned they had no control over the temperatures in their own homes.

Temperatures climbed into the 90s Tuesday, which is why Tony Talarico tried to crank up the air conditioning in his partner’s Arvada home.

I mean, it was 90 out, and it was right during the peak period,” Talarico said. “It was hot.

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That’s when he saw a message on the thermostat stating the temperature was locked due to an “energy emergency.”

Normally, when we see a message like that, we’re able to override it,” Talarico said. “In this case, we weren’t. So, our thermostat was locked in at 78 or 79.

On social media, dozens of Xcel customers complained of similar experiences — some reporting home temperatures as high as 88 degrees.

Xcel confirmed to Contact Denver7 that 22,000 customers who had signed up for the Colorado AC Rewards program were locked out of their smart thermostats for hours on Tuesday.

It’s a voluntary program. Let’s remember that this is something that customers choose to be a part of based on the incentives,” said Emmett Romine, vice president of customer solutions and innovation at Xcel.

Customers receive a $100 credit for enrolling in the program and $25 annually, but Romine said customers also agree to give up some control to save energy and money and make the system more reliable.

You will never go without electricity with this portable power station!

So, it helps everybody for people to participate in these programs. It is a bit uncomfortable for a short period of time, but it’s very, very helpful,” said Romine.

This is the first time in the program’s six year span that customers could not override their smart thermostats, Romine said. He said the “energy emergency” was due to an unexpected outage in Pueblo combined with hot weather and heavy air conditioner usage.

But Talarico said he had no idea that he could be locked out of the thermostat. While he has solar panels and a smart thermostat to save energy, he says he did not sign up to have this much control taken away.

To me, an emergency means there is, you know, life, limb, or, you know, some other danger out there — some, you know, massive wildfires,” Talarico said. “Even if it’s a once-in-a-blue-moon situation, it just doesn’t sit right with us to not be able to control our own thermostat in our house.

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It seems that it also happened to Texans one year ago:

Soon this will be mandatory… They want to control you and everything you do in and outside! [Denver Channel]

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  1. Kalifornia doesn’t want people charging their EV now between 1600hrs and 2100hrs. So how in the hell do they expect people to charge vehicles when they flip everyone into the EV “solution” by 2035?

    If they want 20,000,000 EV, then when they have an adequate amount charging stations, the grid will never support the load. The leaders have their coiffed heads up their butts. Idiots.

  2. My solution was to not allow them to install a Smart Meter to begin with. There was quite a battle, but they have to read mine the old fashion way. Aside from them messing with your power consumption, it’s also a massive data mining system. Tells them everything about you. Some new appliances have microphones and cameras. But I also have solar and wind. Eventually the grid is going down.

    • @Gary,
      When I lived in a city, I never let the power company install a smart meter either. I had a gate and dogs behind it. They had to read it with a monocular.

  3. People should use a backup window mounted a/c unit. $300-$400. Next time you get locked out of your thermostat, simply walk over and power up the windowsill a/c unit. Or a swamp cooler, which is modest on electrical power. The window a/c unit (I had years ago) used about 900 watts. My new solar a/c uses about 600 watts.

    In Winter, use a five gallon propane tank with a heater buddy. That’s my solution for these types of situations.

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