How to keep your energy bill low when temps are high

Can you and your family agree on where to set the thermostat when the outside temperature is soaring high? Neither can ours.

Let's face it -- in the summer months, families tend to debate what temperature is best and most effective in keeping everyone comfortable.

"There's no magic spot," joked Duke Energy spokesman Jeff Brooks. He suggests finding a temperature that is most comfortable for everyone in the house.

Along with family back-and-forths on an appropriate setting, generally comes seasonably higher electric bills than normal. According to Duke Energy, the highest bills are seen in the July-August summer months and January-February winter months.

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In an effort to save money, Brooks suggests the following tips to conserve energy and keep your utility bill low:

  • Set your thermostat a few degrees higher than normal.
  • Run your ceiling fan. It serves as a way to cool people, instead of rooms.
  • Find the "most comfortable" temperature setting in your home and stick with it.
  • Keep the blinds closed in rooms where there is a lot of direct sunlight.


"Just bumping up that thermostat a few degrees really can save you meaningfully on your bill," Brooks said. Per Brooks, air conditioners are among the biggest energy users in the home. "If you can tackle that, if you can increase the thermostat just a few degrees, it really will make a meaningful impact on your bill."

Another popular way to save money is to enroll in Duke Energy's equal payment plan which looks at your utility bill over the course of a year and uses an "average amount" to determine a 12-month equal payment. Some months you may pay more than if you weren't on the plan. In contrast, such as in July-August and January-February, residents would end up paying less than they normally would if not on the plan.
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