Daylight Savings Time – Friend or Foe?

Posted by Daniel F Luna, P. E. on Mar 9, 2023 1:05:17 PM

Bruce 30 years (3)Sunday, March 12th, we'll 'spring forward' an hour on our clocks. Soon, Congress is going to vote to put to rest the yo-yoing of clocks twice a year.  If and when it does become law, we will be staying this way "forever." But is this a good or a bad thing?

On the friend side, I for one will be grateful not to have to set the clock on the microwave, the coffee pot, the stove, and the big wind-up grandfather clock in the library. Windows PCs that are connected the internet and have automatic updates turned on will get a patch from MicroSloth before November so things stay as they should. Also it will mitigate one of my pet peeves. Many businesses show their hours on their website and voice announcement as “8 AM to 5 PM Eastern Standard Time.” When I ask what their hours are during the summer (EDT) they look at me like I have lobsters coming out of my head.

On the foe side, systems integrators, transportation officials, power distribution and generation services and others have a lot of work to do in the next seven months to prevent a “faux.”

Many systems will be impacted and are not internet-facing. SCADA systems that run buildings, tunnels, pharmaceutical operations, manufacturing, logistics and more all will be impacted.

For many years, these isolated systems have had code in them to adjust between EST and EDT (speaking for the east coast – your zones may vary). This code is in traffic light controllers, power-factor-correcting capacitor banks hanging on utility poles, PLCs, network switches, telephone call centers, elevator banks, and more.

Basically, any system that operates based on time of day is impacted. This is operation or alarm logging or historical logging. Here is a picture of a Tridium historian reliving one hour when going from EDT to EST.

daylight savings

If you're worried about how your systems might be affected by Daylight Savings, be sure to reach out to us at EES. We're here to help! 


Topics: engineering, dan luna, technology, SCADA