Written by Michelle Corless, Multimedia Journalist
CEDAR RAPIDS (KWWL) –
Rick Telsrow is an Energy Corps member through Americorps.
He’s stationed at Hawkeye Area Community Action Program, Inc (HACAP).
Part of his job is to teach low-income people in the Cedar Rapids area how to lower their energy bills.
“It gives our clients the opportunity to learn how to save money and maximize the amount of money they have and put it towards their energy bill,” said Telsrow.
His class is centered around the “Energy Wise Home Savings Kit.”
It contains things like energy efficient light bulbs and a high efficiency showerhead; tools anyone can pick up at the hardware store to save money in the long-run.
“What you can do in 45 minutes to a couple hours to save you roughly $240 a year in energy savings,” said Telsrow.
The average Alliant Energy customer spends 32 cents per hour to run their air conditioning and it’s more expensive in the hotter weather. For those who are struggling to keep up with that cost, the company offers payment plans and extensions.
“We want to make it as easy as possible for them to make some payment during this time but also remain comfortable in their homes,” said Ryan Stensland, Spokesperson for Alliant Energy.
The company is also offering up some tips on how to keep the bill down while staying cool.
“We encourage customers to keep those windows closed,” said Stensland. “Keep the curtains closed during the day. Keep that cool air in the house. Use fans in your home to circulate the air.”
Alliant also says using fans lets you set your thermostat about four degrees higher and still be comfortable.
The myth that keeping the temperature in your home constant is cheaper isn’t true.
You should set the thermostat higher or turn the air off when you aren’t home to lower your bill.
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