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ROSEMEAD, Calif., Aug. 22, 2011 – To lower bills amid high summer heat that’s forecast for the next several days, Southern California Edison (SCE) offers solutions to save energy and money and help the environment.
"Our first priority is keeping our customers safe and comfortable, while ensuring grid reliability during hot summer days," said Gene Rodrigues, SCE's director of Customer Energy Efficiency and Solar. "We offer a suite of programs for residential and business customers that can help slash electricity usage and keep bills down."
One way customers can escape the heat without worrying about running up cooling bills is to come to an SCE Cool Center, open in targeted community buildings during extremely hot days. Cool centers are for everyone, especially those at risk for heat-related illness. More information is at www.sce.com/coolcenters.
SCE, which leads the nation’s utilities in energy efficiency and is recognized by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and others for its groundbreaking work, suggests these easy ways to cut electricity usage this summer:
- Keep the thermostat set at 78 degrees or higher, cool only the areas in the home that are being used and turn the AC off when you leave. A 3-ton central air conditioner can cost an average of $80 a month to run, when operated four hours a day. To get the most from your air conditioner, regularly clean or replace the filters. A room will cool considerably when you close the drapes and use a fan.
- Swap incandescent bulbs for CFLs and immediately see a savings of 75 percent of your lighting bill. CFLs emit hardly any heat, which reduces the temperature inside the home. SCE works with 23 manufacturers to buy down the cost of CFLs in more than 4,000 stores in its service territory, so cost won’t be an issue. CFLs now come in many different light qualities and sizes.
- Cook outdoors or use the microwave instead of the stove. You’ll save on electricity or gas, and you’ll also keep the house cooler. On average, it costs $7.23 to run an electric stove for 45 minutes a day; slow-cookers and electric skillets are more efficient options. To maximize your stove’s efficiency, match the cookware to the burner size, use tight-fitting lids and cover pots when you bring them to a boil.
- Letting the pool pump run longer than four to six hours per day won’t significantly improve the water cleanliness, but it will add to your electricity bill. The average cost per month to run a pool pump six hours a day is about $37. Also, older single-speed models can cost more to run. SCE offers rebates up to $200 for more efficient, variable-speed pool pumps.
- Take an energy efficiency survey for home or business and get customized solutions that can reduce your monthly electricity bill. Visit www.sce.com/survey for homes and www.sce.com/bizsurvey for businesses.
- If you’re in the market for new appliances and equipment, look for ENERGY STAR-labeled devices. SCE offers rebates on the following (http://www.sce.com/rebatesandsavings), and you can check with your city or county for additional incentives:
- ENERGY STAR-qualified portable room air conditioner ($20).
- Energy-efficient evaporative cooling systems ($300).
- Refrigerator and freezer recycling program ($50).
- Select an ENERGY STAR-qualified refrigerator ($50).
- Variable-speed pool pump and motor ($200).
- Air-conditioning maintenance and installation services (up to $2,000).
Rebates for businesses include:
- Reflective window film ($1.35/per square foot).
- Energy-efficient evaporative coolers ($123 per ton).
- Package terminal air conditioners through-the-wall, self-contained and two tons or less ($100 per unit).
For more ways to save energy and keep electricity bills low, check out www.sce.com/tips or call SCE at 1-800-736-4777.
About Southern California Edison
An Edison International (NYSE:EIX) company, Southern California Edison is one of the nation’s largest electric utilities, serving a population of nearly 14 million via 4.9 million customer accounts in a 50,000-square-mile service area within Central, Coastal and Southern California.