Small steps to save during the dog days of summer

The dog days of summer continue with more triple digit temperatures in the forecast this week. The relentless heat and humidity in South Texas are raising concerns of high energy demand and increased energy bills.

We see it happen every August. Naturally, nobody likes walking into a hot, humid house after a long day at work, which means air conditioners will be running full blast. At the same time, there’s dinner to prepare, clothes to be washed, dishes to be cleaned, devices to be charged – the list goes on. As a result, energy demand, the amount of electricity being used across our community, increases significantly between 3 – 7 p.m. on weekdays. These are peak energy demand hours when electricity use spikes along with outdoor temperatures.

So, what can you do? If you follow the same daily routine under these sweltering conditions, it can drive up your energy bill, especially if you keep the A/C set at 72 degrees. The good news is you can take small steps around your home to lower energy usage and minimize impact to your bill. Here are some tips to help you out:

  • Set thermostats 2° to 3° higher during peak hours. Set programmable thermostats to higher temperatures when no one is home.
  • Use fans in occupied rooms to feel 4° to 6° cooler.
  • Discontinue the use of large appliances such as the dishwasher, oven, washer and dryer during peak hours.
  • Turn off all lights and appliances and unplug electronic equipment when not in use.
  • Close blinds and drapes in rooms that get direct sun.
  • Grill or use a microwave to cook meals.

Click here for more tips.

This summer, we’ve been getting the word out to the community about days when high energy demand is anticipated. If you’re tuning in to local news, watch for segments about the weather and alerts about high energy demand. Check out this segment with one of our energy experts that’s aired on KENS 5 this summer.

Keep an eye out throughout town for digital billboard messages on your commutes asking you to reduce your electricity use between 3 – 7 p.m. You can also check for energy demand alerts on our website,, and on our social media messages. Some of our customers receive phone calls, emails and texts asking them to use less energy during the day.

And while extreme temperatures on your mind, it’s a good time to plan for future extreme weather patterns. We have a program you can sign up for that offers a one-time $150 rebate on qualifying WiFi thermostats for both residential and business customers. WiFi thermostats let you manage your home’s temperature from anywhere and you can earn an annual $30 bill credit by allowing us to adjust your thermostat settings by a few degrees as needed to manage the demand for electricity.

Simple and inexpensive actions can help you save energy and money during the hot summer months. Gain more control over your energy usage and apply energy-saving tips around your home to start saving today!

Sam Taylor

Sam is part of the Corporate Communications team at CPS Energy.

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