East Texas group offers energy-saving tips

BEAUMONT, TX (News Release) - By Donna McCollum - email

NACOGDOCHES, TX (KTRE) - Sunflowers thrive in hot weather, while humans often swelter in the heat. We're quick to head to the cool air conditioning. Comfortable, but expensive.

"The best tip for staying cool and saving energy is to actually raise your thermostat to 78," said Teresa Land, the Community Action Case manager.

And rely more on fans.

Community Action provides the tip to the thousands of people in a 12-county region who can't afford their electric bills.

"A lot of people want to turn it on and off, but it's good to just set it there and leave it there," Land said.

And remember to keep those air filters clean. Change them at least once a month.

Here's a bright idea: low-wattage light bulbs which emit light of a 60-watt bulb are cost saving.

You should also look for air leaks around plumbing, the attic and doors.

"Just take your hand, go around," Land said. "If you feel like warm air coming in, then you know you're losing some air."

TXU Energy is launching its "beat the heat" program. The company, voluntarily, has a summer moratorium on disconnects and flexible payment plans for needy customers.

"Maybe it's a situation where their bill is higher than they need it to be in this tough time," said Kelli Rod of TXU Energy.

Community Action energy assistance has more money and a higher qualifying income cap than last year.

"Don't wait to the last minute," Land said. "Just as soon as you realize that you're not gonna be able to pay that bill that month, give us a call and see what we can do."

Better yet, start now, following guidelines on how to stay cool and save money all summer long.

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