YUMA, Ariz. – Any given household’s power bill could double or triple during the summer in the Desert Southwest. The question remains: should you turn your a/c off to conserve electricity during the day? APS community affairs manager Anna Chaulk said absolutely not.
“If you put your thermostat up by one degree, you could save two to three percent over the year on your electricity bill. Imagine if you put it up two or three degrees, you will save a lot of money over time” she said.
Air conditioning uses more energy than any other household item, accounting for 40% of a customer’s power bill. Chaulk explained some simple changes you can make to cut down on a/c use.
“Making sure that all cracks in your doors are sealed as tightly as possible, making sure you do heat producing activities during the day — during cooler parts of the day — so for example cook early in the morning or late at night if possible,” Chaulk said.
That rule also goes for doing laundry or running the dishwasher. You should also replace air filters and trade in old light bulbs for energy efficient LED’s. Avoid opening the refrigerator too; she said that simple advice could save you twenty bucks throughout the year.
“The average family in Arizona opens and closes their refrigerator door an average of 40 to 60 times a day, so if you imagine, that’s a lot of wasted energy,” she said.
Chaulk said turn them off ceiling fans during the day.
“Fans cool people, not rooms, so if you think about a fan running all day, and you’re not sitting in that room, you’re just using the energy to run the fan, and you’re not getting the effects of that cooling,” Chaulk explained.