Intense heat impacts homes and businesses

Intense heat impacts homes and businesses

(WAFF) - People are looking to beat the heat both in their homes and in the community.

The owner at Olde Town Coffee Shoppe, Jillian Riley, said she's seen more traffic in her store than normal, and said folks are sitting indoors for longer. Riley said some people come in and don't even buy anything – they're just looking for a cool place to chill out.

She said so far this summer, it's been all about water bottles and iced coffee for her customers. She keeps a water bowl outside for dogs and her gazebos have fans installed to provide relief for those who decide to sit outdoors. 

All in all, she said the warmer temperatures help her business during the heat of the summer and she welcomes the opportunity to provide a place to cool folks down.

"A lot more people bringing their computers in and sitting for a little bit longer, gathering with other people, just trying to stay out of the heat and take advantage of some AC in an establishment other than their house," Riley said.

But for those who want to enjoy AC in their house, WAFF 48 gathered money-saving tips to get you through the most expensive time of year when it comes to your utility bill.

Huntsville Utilities said the end of July headed into August is historically their highest bill period. There are a lot of little things you can do that could save you and your wallet big time:

  • If you have ceiling fans, keep them on whenever you're at home.
  • Be sure to change your AC unit filter and schedule tune up's for your system.
  • Air conditioning units are like any other machine - they need maintenance to perform their best and save you the most money.
  • It's recommended you keep your thermostat set at 78 degrees in the summer.
  • Lowering that temperature by just one degree could increase your bill by $5 a month.

Finally, if you bump the temperature up a few degrees before you leave for work, Huntsville Utilities said that is not saving you any money.

"With the air conditioning unit, which is a heat pump in most cases working in reverse, it's better to have the thermostat at an even keel and then make slight adjustments to it so it controls your bill, helps you acclimatize," Huntsville Utilities Representative Harry Hobbs said.

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