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'Helps to better manage energy bills': LG&E suggests ways to save on energy bill amid extreme heat

Here's what experts say when it comes to properly using your air conditioner during the heat.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — It's a moment of relief many look forward to amid these bouts of extreme heat: blasting the air-conditioner.

As Kentuckiana gears up for the hot week ahead, many will be putting their air-conditioning units to the test. But, experts say turning down the dial may prove to be less effective than you'd think.

"Turning the temperature down on your thermostat is not going to make the air coming out of the vents any colder," Ali Boudreaux, the service manager at Elite Heating and Air, said. 

Boudreaux says your air conditioner is only designed to cool to 20 degrees below the outside temperature.

"If you have your thermostat set on, say 70 degrees, then it's only designed keep it at 70 degrees until it's 90 degrees outside," she said.

HVAC service provider Elite Heating and Air has been operating out of New Albany for over a century.

"Majority of the year, we're preparing for the hottest temperatures of the year," General Manager Parker Roberts said. 

He said the company works with manufacturers to ensure they'll have the proper equipment to complete service calls.

"We make sure we have enough equipment and everything that we'll need for a weekend like this, or a week like this, where it's insanely hot," Roberts said. "Air conditioners are breaking every other day. So it's pretty crazy."

Roberts said during an average workday, the company receives anywhere from 40 to 60 calls. However this week, they're receiving upward of 200 calls per day.

Most of those calls, Bodreaux said, she's speaking to customers who need their air filters changed.

"Change your filter, not just when there's a heatwave coming," she said. "Every 30 days, you need to change your filter."

Over at energy provider LG&E, they say energy maintenance is important year-round but especially during times of extreme weather conditions.

"It's a good thing to keep some simple tips in mind that can help to better manage energy use," Natasha Collins, a spokesperson with LG&E said. "[It] helps to better manage energy bills."

Collins said that heating and cooling can account for as much as 40% of your energy bill.

She shared the following tips that can help you make sure that your system is capable of operating in extreme conditions:

  • Have a certified professional check out your air-conditioning unit annually
  • Make sure that you're changing your filters regularly
  • Make sure that your vents aren't covered inside or outside
  • Seal up any leaks that you may have under doors or around windows 

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