JACKSON, Miss.- The past few weeks temperatures have been reaching into the mid 90’s, but this week the heat index could feel like 105 degrees outside! So, how do you keep yourself from a heat stroke without giving yourself a stroke when you see your energy bill?
Entergy has a few tips:
- Set your thermostat to 78 degrees or the highest comfortable temperature. Each degree cooler than 78 will increase your bill as much as 3 percent.
- Circulate the cool air in your home with ceiling, oscillating or box fans. The average ceiling fan makes a room feel seven degrees cooler.
- Use kitchen and bathroom exhaust fans to remove excess heat and humidity caused by cooking, laundering and bathing. High humidity makes our bodies hold more heat.
- Avoid using the stove if possible and consider grilling outside instead. Use dishwashers, washing machines and dryers – which add heat and moisture to your home – during the coolest part of the day.
- Don’t block air vents with curtains, shades or furniture.
- Turn off unnecessary lights during hot weather and consider switching to cooler, energy-efficient fluorescent bulbs where light is needed.
Entergy Mississippi customers can also use billing tools and assistance programs to lower their bills.
Entergy’s energy saving tools and programs include:
- Analyze My Bill: An interactive tool, which allows customers to learn how much energy they use month to month, and pinpoint where they can save money. It is available at http://entergy-mississippi.com/your_home/my_account/
- Money-saving calculators: Customers can access a slew of energy-saving tips and calculators at http://www.entergy.com/save_money/ to determine the best cost-cutting scenarios to suit their lifestyle, home and billing needs.
- Customer assistance programs: Entergy’s customer assistance programs can provide a helping hand to qualified customers struggling to keep safe and cool. For contact information of community partners who administer customer assistance funds, please visit http://www.entergy.com/our_community/low_income.aspx.
Mississippi Handyman Buddy Slowick says you can also keep your bills down by walking around your house to see if you have any air infiltration, because any air infiltration is going to bring in warm air making it harder to cool your house. The typical areas you should check for infiltration include doorways, windows, where the pipes are under your sink, and electrical outlets. This can be fixed by adding foam padding, caulking up holes, or even just laying a towel under the doorway.
Slowick says it is important to make sure you have enough insulation in your attic and that your air conditioning unit should be annually checked, making sure Freon levels are up to par and that your filter is changed at least once a month.