Insights > How customers can beat the heat and keep their cool
The summer heat is in full swing, and most likely, so is your cooling system. Whether you’ve turned down the thermostat or turned up the air conditioner, increasing your energy consumption can lead to an increase in your electric bill.
Temperatures are hitting record highs this year, with records in Southeast Texas increasing significantly from 2021. Beaumont’s historic average high temperatures in July ranged between 91 and 92 degrees. This year, the records range from the mid to upper 90s and even triple digits.
Cooling and heating costs account for approximately 55% of a customer’s average electricity bill. When it’s extremely hot, as it is now, it takes more energy to keep your home at the temperature you’ve set on your thermostat.
Staying cool doesn’t have to be priced. Here are ways to save energy without breaking the bank or breaking the bank.
- Have your air conditioning inspected to ensure your system is leak-free and operating as efficiently as possible. Don’t forget the air filters; some units require monthly cleaning or replacement.
- Set your thermostat to 78 degrees or the highest comfortable temperature. Every degree below 78 can increase your bill by up to 3%. If you turn the air conditioning down to 72 degrees cooler, you’ve already increased your bill by 18%.
- Buy a programmable thermostat. As energy consumption increases, costs also increase. If you spend most of your day away from home, set your thermostat to automatically turn off or increase the air conditioning setting when you’re away.
- Use fans to cool yourself, but remember that fans cool people, not rooms. Ceiling fans, box fans, and oscillating fans use very little electricity and circulate air, helping you feel several degrees cooler. To save more energy, be sure to turn them off when you leave the room.
- Close shades, blinds and curtains to keep the sun out and the cool air in. Also close air conditioning vents in rooms that are not in use.
- Seal cracks and holes around doors, windows and ducts. Inexpensive weatherstripping and sealant will help keep cold air in and warm air out.
- Monitor your usage. Use the myAdvisor tool on myentergy.com to find out when you’re using the most energy. The usage and cost tool can compare your usage history by month, day and hour.
If you’ve received a large bill, here are six options for managing costs or getting help:
- Billing at level – Entergy averages your bill over a rolling 12-month period, so you have a constant bill every month of the year. You’ll pay about the same every month, no surprises.
- Pick a date – Choose the day of the month you are billed to align with your budget and manage your cash flow.
- Deferred payment – Contact us with more details and we may be able to make deferred payment arrangements. Dial 1-800-ENTERGY (1-800-368-3749).
- Payment extension – Eligible customers who need more time to pay their bill can call our automated response system at 1-800-ENTERGY (1-800-368-3749) or request an extension through myEntergy.
- The power to heal – Through Entergy’s The Power to Care program, local nonprofits can provide emergency bill-paying assistance to seniors and people with disabilities in crisis. To learn more, visit www.entergy-texas.com/bill-help/.
- LIHEAP – LIHEAP (Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program) provides money to help people pay their energy bills and other energy-related expenses. LIHEAP is federally funded and works with community action agencies to help people pay for and maintain electrical service in their homes. For more resource information, visit entergy-texas.com/bill-help/.
- Another useful way to manage your bill is to monitor your usage using our free Entergy mobile phone app. where customers with a smart meter can track their usage and learn ways to be more energy efficient before the next bill arrives.
Customers who are concerned about paying their bills or are having difficulty paying their bill should contact the company online or by phone at 1-800 ENTERGY (1-800-368-3749). Our representatives can review your account or assist you with available billing assistance options that may be best for you and your family.