IMPORTANT INFORMATION FOR DISH SUBSCRIBERS – SERVICE INTERRUPTION – CLICK HERE

Beating the heat and rising electric bills

SPRINGETTSBURY TOWNSHIP, YORK COUNTY, Pa. --  The week's hot weather has power providers anticipating a strain on the power grid.

Power companies say they're prepared to handle the excess demand.

There are a few things consumers can do to avoid electric shock from next months bill.

Some store shelves maybe practically bare as people made a run on air conditioners and fans.

Electric companies do have a few words of advice before anyone flips a switch to cool off.

The high temperatures have many trying to beat the heat.

Lowes greeter Chris Veseth said "it's been nonstop. A lot of air conditioners, a lot of furnace filters, portable fans."

All of those appliances could cause electric bills to soar as temperatures rise. There is an answer to the much heated debate of whether to leave the ac running all day or turn it on and off when needed.

Pennsylvania Power and Light regional affairs director Jess Long said "you can either turn it off while you're away for the day, or you can turn it about 7 to 8 degrees higher than you normally would, and both help you save money."

One thing long advised customers shouldn't do, is crank up the A/C on high when arriving home. Long said it won't help your home cool down faster, but it may cost you more money if it gets cooler than expected.

Many businesses like Lowes also find ways to keep cool and conserve electricity.

"To beat the heat, certain times of the day, we'll cut some of the lights off, that keeps it a little cooler for customers and employees during the hot months," Veseth said.

"It's good to try to use those things at night. The dishwasher will put some extra heat into your kitchen. We encourage people to grill out in the summer, because then you're not using the oven," Long said.

Long has another bright idea on saving energy and your money.

"We have discounts on LED lightbulbs, and you don't need a coupon or anything. Just search on our website by your zip code and you can find different home improvement stores where you can buy them at a discount,"" Long said.

A lights out approach to defeat the heat may catch some customers off guard.

"They're constantly asking me, 'is everything OK, did you guys lose power.' The ongoing joke is 'did you forget to pay you're electric bill,' but that's not the case, just trying to keep things cool," Veseth said.

Power companies don't expect any outages from the high usage at the moment, but they are concerned about are  storms in the forecast which could disrupt service.