ORLANDO, Fla. — As outside temperatures keep rising, and Central Floridians continue to spend more time inside their homes, energy bills may also be creeping up.
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OUC is reporting that the average household is seeing a 29% increase in year-over-year energy usage from April 2019 to April 2020 due to these factors.
In a time when many are out of work, avoiding the the added financial strain of higher-than-budgeted energy bills is more important than ever.
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To help, Channel 9, with the help of the OUC, compiled a list of nine tips to help conserve energy to lower their utility bills:
- OUC’s top tip is to set your thermostat to 78 degrees to save on cooling costs. Air conditioners account for 52% of the average utility bill.
- Turn off the lights when you leave a room.
- Unplug devices that aren’t in use. OUC said lights and devices account for 9% of your utility bill.
- Wash your clothes in cold water. OUC said laundry and hot water account for 21% of your utility bill.
- Air-dry your lightest fabrics. It’s easier on your delicate clothes, and you won’t need to use the clothes dryer.
- Check your fridge and freezer seals for leaks. Doing so will make sure they are running efficiently. The oven, dishwasher and fridge account for 11% of your utility bill.
- A fuller freezer and refrigerator use less energy. Use gallon jugs of water to take up unused space.
- Looking for a snack? Try to figure out what you want before you head for the fridge. Frequently opening and closing the refrigerator door can increase your electric bill. For extra energy savings, clean the condenser coils behind or underneath the refrigerator every six months.
- Change or clean heating and air-conditioning filters monthly. Dirty filters put an unnecessary strain on the unit and can increase operating costs.
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OUC said customers can schedule a free over-the- phone home efficiency audit with an OUC conservation specialist to review personal usage and receive useful solutions. OUC customers can schedule an audit by calling 407-423-9018.
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