News & Announcements

Hotter than Usual Summer Could Lead to Higher Bills

Aug 04, 2014

Take Steps Now to Conserve

ORLANDO – Central Florida’s unrelenting summer temperatures often lead to higher energy bills as customers try to beat the heat at home because air conditioning can account for half of the average home’s summer energy bill.

According to the National Weather Service, both June and July were statistically hotter than last year, and above the normal highs for this time of year. Higher temperatures usually lead to higher energy bills. However, OUC–The Reliable One wants to remind its customers that there are ways to keep both their cool and their cash during the scorching summer heat.

OUC recommends these simple and inexpensive ways to keep bills from escalating:

  • Set your thermostat at 78 degrees or higher. Each degree you lower the thermostat below 78 degrees can cost you six to eight percent more on your cooling costs.
  • Keep your central A/C unit set to auto, so the fan isn’t constantly turning.
  • Use ceiling fans to make rooms feel cooler.  Make sure they’re turning counter clockwise, but don’t forget to turn them off when the room is empty.
  • Replace your air filter regularly.
  • Consider upgrading to a smart thermostat. Smart thermostats can help save up to 10 percent on cooling costs.
  • Use shades, drapes and blinds to keep the sun and heat out, especially on windows that face east or west.
  • Close windows and outside doors while the air conditioner is on.
  • Caulk and place weather strips around leaky windows and doors.
  • Wash only full loads in dishwashers and clothing washers. Using hot water can add about 90 percent to the cost of each load, so consider using cold water.
  • Clear your dryer vent regularly to prevent fires and improve efficiency.
  • Check your water heater temperature to ensure it is set to more than 120 degrees, otherwise you’re wasting energy.

OUC also offers options for those looking to stay as energy efficient as possible. Anyone – even if you’re not an OUC customer – can visit ouc.com for a free online home energy audit. There, they can find out how efficient their home’s energy is and where they can make improvements for lower bills.

For more tools to help save energy and money, visit ouc.com/waystosave

Established in 1923 by a special act of the Florida Legislature, OUC—The Reliable One is the second largest municipal utility in Florida. OUC provides electric and water services to nearly 230,000 customers in Orlando, St. Cloud and parts of unincorporated Orange and Osceola counties. Visit ouc.com to learn more about our commitment to reliability, affordability and sustainability.