Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Hating this heat? Wait until the electric bill arrives

With the heat index hovering around 100 degrees, fatigue and sluggishness are common.

But the biggest pain probably will arrive next month in your electric bill.

Hot, dry air over Tampa Bay, along with a slowdown in thunderstorms, has made the heat particularly oppressive over the past few days, said Bay News 9 meteorologist Juli Marquez.

That means demand for energy hits a peak. And that probably means higher electric bills.

Duke Energy recommends setting your thermostat at 78 degrees.

For every degree above 78, your air-conditioning costs will decrease up to 10 percent, said spokesman Sterling Ivey.

"This is the hottest time of the year in Florida," he said. "If customers are running their airconditioners more because of the heat, it's likely they'll use more electricity and have a higher energy bill."

Duke Energy, which supplies electricity to a 20,000-square-mile region of Florida, said the company monitors weather patterns to predict and plan for spikes in energy demand.

Utility companies typically recommend keeping your blinds closed, using ceiling fans and having regular maintenance checks on your air-conditioning unit.

In the meantime, experts say, it's important to take care of yourself, too.

If you have to exercise or work outside, do it during the cooler hours of the day, said Rebecca Lopez, an assistant professor of athletic training at the University of South Florida.

Take frequent breaks from the heat, and stay hydrated.

In extreme heat, your blood circulation has to work harder to maintain a normal body temperature, Lopez said. This leads to the sluggish feeling you get after being in the sun for a long time.

Additionally, Florida's humidity prevents sweat from evaporating quickly, a key in lowering body temperature.

"If you're someone who works outside all the time, you will be able to deal a little better," Lopez said. "It really has to do with what you're doing outside in the heat and how used to it you are."

Contact Lauren Carroll at lcarroll@tampabay.com. Follow her on Twitter @LaurenFCarroll.

Hating this heat? Wait until the electric bill arrives 08/14/13 [Last modified: Wednesday, August 14, 2013 10:50pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Search for missing Army helicopter crew suspended in Hawaii

    Military

    HONOLULU — Officials have suspended the search for five Army soldiers who were aboard a helicopter that crashed during offshore training in Hawaii last week.

    Water safety officials hand over possible debris from an Army UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter crash to military personnel stationed at a command center in a harbor, Wednesday in Haleiwa, Hawaii, a day after. an Army helicopter with five on board crashed several miles off Oahu's North Shore. Officials  suspended the search for five Army soldiers in a helicopter crash during offshore training in Hawaii on Monday. [Associated Press]
  2. Rubio praises Trump for 'excellent' speech on Afghanistan

    Blogs

    Sen. Marco Rubio praised President Donald Trump's "excellent" speech on Afghanistan. Sen. Bill Nelson was less effusive but agreed with the goal.

  3. Gov. Rick Scott blasts report of shifting words on Charlottesville

    Blogs

    Gov. Rick Scott, one of the most scripted politicians in modern Florida history, said Monday that "both sides” bear blame for Charlottesville.

  4. Record $417 million awarded in lawsuit linking baby powder to cancer

    Nation

    LOS ANGELES — A Los Angeles jury on Monday ordered Johnson & Johnson to pay a record $417 million to a hospitalized woman who claimed in a lawsuit that the talc in the company's iconic baby powder causes ovarian cancer when applied regularly for feminine hygiene.

    A bottle of Johnson's baby powder is displayed. On Monday, Aug. 21, 2017, a Los Angeles County Superior Court spokeswoman confirmed that a jury has ordered Johnson & Johnson to pay $417 million in a case to a woman who claimed in a lawsuit that the talc in the company's iconic baby powder causes ovarian cancer when applied regularly for feminine hygiene. [Associated Press]
  5. Search under way for missing sailors; Navy chief orders inquiry

    Military

    SINGAPORE — The U.S. Navy ordered a broad investigation Monday into the performance and readiness of the Pacific-based 7th Fleet after the USS John S. McCain collided with an oil tanker in Southeast Asian waters, leaving 10 U.S. sailors missing and others injured.

    Damage is visible as the USS John S. McCain steers toward Singapore’s naval base on Monday.