Energy councilor gives advice for summer savings


As temperatures rise in Clark County, homeowners have options to save money on energy bills while staying cool.

Anthony Jeffries, an energy services representative from Clark Public Utilities (CPU), said, as part of his job, Jeffries meets with CPU customers to walk through their homes, recommending ways to save energy and money during extreme weather. He can also provide information on the various rebates CPU offers, as well.

We’re really trying to focus on reducing people’s load in terms of bringing their bills down, but also keeping them comfortable,” Jeffries said. “… Once we get those heat domes, people’s bills tend to increase, and we tend to get busier.”

Jeffries said the hottest weather in the county can be expected in July and August. A simple way to save money is for residents to open windows when appropriate so they don’t overuse their air conditioning units.

“So (open) windows when the days are not too hot yet in the early mornings, and then, as soon as the sun goes down and it starts to taper off, open up those windows again. That’s free air conditioning right there,” Jeffries said.

Investing in a smart thermostat can help residents save the most in energy costs, Jeffries said. Smart devices can be set to cool the home during peak heat hours and save energy when outdoor temperatures are lower.

Jeffries also recommends homeowners check their homes to ensure they are properly insulated to maintain a consistent temperature. He noted most homes built before the 1990s do not have adequate insulation. Though important for comfort, Jeffries noted that installing it throughout an entire home can be expensive.

“If [residents] don’t have the capital funds to add insulation at that point at time, they can do something as simple as closing their shades during the peak time of day when it’s the hottest, around 4 or 5 o’clock when the sun’s really beating down [or] closing up shades, trying to really keep the heat out and keep your cool in,” Jeffries said.

Homeowners should also call a professional or an HVAC provider to ensure their equipment is running well. In terms of energy saving, Jeffries noted that running a central system fan can cost residents $20 a month, which adds up over the course of the summer. Utilizing portable or installed fan systems can save residents money.

“We always recommend, if you have ceiling fans or box fans, those are very inexpensive to run and can push (air) around a bit better, especially if you’re right underneath it, you know, [or in] a living room or bedroom” Jeffries said.

CPU Media Specialist Dameon Pesanti recommends that energy-heavy units, especially portable air conditioners, be plugged directly into a wall’s power outlet. Most power strips and surge protectors do not supply air conditioners with sufficient energy and may cause a circuit to short.

CPU offers rebate programs to help Clark County homeowners prepare their homes for heating and cooling. Jeffries said a heat pump, which has a rebate program through CPU, helps residents year round by pumping hot air in during the winter, but can work to push hot air out of homes during the summer. CPU also offers rebates for ductless heat pumps, which are small and easier to install. A rebate is also available for smart thermostats.

Go to to learn more about the programs and rebates CPU offers.