TUCSON, Ariz.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–As the days get longer and temperatures rise, Tucson Electric Power
(TEP) is reminding customers about energy-saving measures that can
mitigate the higher electric bills associated with hot summer weather.
Increased air conditioning use usually drives electric consumption
higher beginning in May until it peaks typically in July, when average
monthly usage for residential customers exceeds 1,200 kilowatt hours.
To offset those increases, customers can follow a few simple steps and
take advantage of energy efficiency programs that can help keep energy
costs down in hot weather.
Set your thermostat at the highest comfortable temperature to minimize
your cooling costs. The U.S. Department of Energy recommends setting
your thermostat at 78 degrees in the summer, although individual
preferences may vary. For every degree you raise your thermostat, you
can reduce your overall energy costs by about 2-3 percent.
Use ceiling or oscillating fans to keep air moving so you feel cooler
without increasing air conditioner use. Don’t block vents or ducts
inside the house. Maintaining clear air paths allows your cooling
system to work more efficiently. Keep exterior doors and windows
closed when running the air conditioner.
In summer, use shades, blinds or curtains to keep sunlight out,
especially during the afternoon in rooms facing west.
Energy Efficiency Programs
Replace traditional incandescent light bulbs with cooler ones like
compact fluorescent lights (CFLs) that carry the Energy Star label.
Energy Star-qualified CFLs use about 75 percent less energy than
standard incandescent bulbs and last up to 10 times longer. They also
generate about 75 percent less heat, so they can cut energy costs
associated with home cooling. Discounted CFLs are available through
Energy Star Lighting Program.
Consider planting trees that will help you conserve energy by shading
buildings and reducing the effects of urban heat islands. TEP
customers can purchase up to three native and low-water trees per year
for just $5 each – down from $8 each last year – through the TEP
Trees for You Program.
With the TEP
Weatherization Assistance program, TEP works with the Tucson Urban
League and Pima County to help limited-income residents reduce their
energy expenses through the installation of improved insulation,
upgraded cooler motors and other home improvements. These upgrades are
provided at no cost to eligible recipients, though funding is limited.
If you are in the market for a new home, TEP
Energy Smart Homes can offer a variety of energy-efficient
features including highly effective insulation, high-performance
windows, tight construction and ducts, efficient heating and cooling
equipment and Energy Star-qualified lighting and appliances.
More energy-saving tips are available at tep.com/tips.
This summer’s higher bills will be mitigated by lower energy costs. Last
month, the Arizona Corporation Commission approved TEP’s request to
decrease the Purchased Power and Fuel Adjustment Charge used to
calculate customers’ monthly bills beginning May 1. The average monthly
bill of a typical residential customer is expected to drop by $4.26 due
to the adjustment, which is the result of lower fuel and purchased power
Customers can reduce their bills even more this summer by signing up now
for an equal payment plan. TEP’s Budget Billing program levels out
seasonal swings in monthly bills by dividing customers’ estimated annual
charges into 12 equal monthly payments. There is no additional charge to
enroll in this program, and customers only pay for the energy they use.
Discounted rates and emergency bill payment assistance also are
available to eligible limited-income customers.
TEP provides safe, reliable electric service to approximately 417,000
customers in Southern Arizona. For more information, visit tep.com.
TEP and its parent company, UNS Energy, are subsidiaries of Fortis Inc.,
which owns utilities that serve more than 3 million customers across
Canada and in the United States and the Caribbean. To learn more, visit fortisinc.com.
Tucson Electric Power
Joseph Barrios, 520-884-3725