Is your pet making your energy bill go up? New FPL/ Harris Interactive study finds majority of Florida pet owners leave

 Is your pet making your energy bill go up? New FPL/ Harris Interactive study
  finds majority of Florida pet owners leave household electric items on for
                       their pets when they're not home

PR Newswire

JUNO BEACH, Fla., Oct. 28, 2013

JUNO BEACH, Fla., Oct. 28, 2013 /PRNewswire/ --Do you leave the lights, fan
or television on for your pet when you're not at home? If so, you're not
alone. Florida Power & Light (FPL) Company has unveiled new information that
suggests Fido and Fifi may be the culprits in higher energy bills.

(Logo: )

A September 2013 survey of more than 1,500 Florida adults, conducted online by
Harris Interactive on behalf of FPL, revealedthat more than half of
Floridians (58 percent) own a dog, cat or bird. Of those, about seven out of
every eight people (86 percent) report that they leave certain electronic
items on for their pet(s) while they are not at home.

"Pets are like family and knowing that your pet is safe and comfortable while
you are away is clearly important to our customers," said Marlene Santos, vice
president of customer service at FPL. "Ideally, we'd like to help our
customers find the best balance of pet comfort and savings."

According to the survey, the most common items left on for pets are:

  oAir conditioning (73 percent)
  oCeiling fan (38 percent)
  oLights (27 percent)
  oTelevision (17 percent)
  oRadio (9 percent)

Ceiling fans left on all the time can account for up to $7 a month spent on
FPL bills to keep pets comfortable.

"In order to save on energy, it is ok for pet owners to raise their
thermostats up a bit while they are not home. Animals should not have any
problems at an ambient temperature between 78-82 degrees," said Dr. Ted
Sanchez, D.V.M., veterinarian and owner of the Silver Bluff Animal Clinic
located in Miami.

FPL released the results of the statewide study as a way to mark October's
Energy Awareness Month and inform FPL customers about the different
energy-saving programs that are available to them.

When asked to choose, nearly half of Florida adults – consider being
comfortable (47 percent) to be most important to them, followed by saving
money (44 percent). Only 9 percent consider saving energy to be most important
to them.

"FPL is committed to helping customers understand what can make their bills go
up and down, and offering energy-saving tools to help them make more informed
energy choices," said Santos. "We are all for keeping pets happy and healthy,"
she said. "FPL is even featuring pets as the home energy experts in our new
Pet Project advertising campaign."

As a first step, Santos recommends customers take the Online Home Energy
Survey to receive a personalized energy savings plan with expert tips and
recommendations that can help them change the current way they use energy and
save up to $250 a year in energy costs, without impacting their pets.

FPL's Energy Dashboard is another online tool that helps customers become more
aware of their own energy use patterns. It allows customers to see how much
energy they're using by the month, day or hour. "Information is power. FPL's
Energy Dashboard can help you see where the spikes in energy use are," said


  oA/C and Ceiling Fans – Florida residents who have central air conditioning
    report that, on average, they use it 18.1 hours per day. Those who own a
    ceiling fan claim an average use of 11.3 hours per day, while those with a
    portable fan estimate an average use of 4.6 hours per day. Likewise, those
    with an air conditioner installed in a window or through the wall report
    that they use it an average of 4.1 hours per day.
  oThermostat Temps – Fifty-nine percent of Florida adults keep the
    temperature on their thermostat low. Reasons for doing this include: so
    they can put on heavy blankets (18 percent), so they can snuggle close
    with their loved one (16 percent), to avoid arguments with their spouse
    (15 percent), to keep their pets comfortable (13 percent) and "other" (20
  oChanging A/C Filter – Only 34 percent of Floridians with air conditioning
    change the unit's filter once a month or more, the recommended frequency
    for maximum efficiency.

       o45 percent change it every 2-6 months
       o7 percent change it every 7-12 months
       o1 percent change it less than once a year
       o2 percent never change the filter in their air conditioner
       o10 percent don't have a set schedule or change it when they

This Florida Energy Use survey was conducted online within the United States
by Harris Interactive on behalf of rbb Public Relations Sept.12-20, 2013,
among 1,586 residents of Florida aged 18 or older. Oversamples were also
obtained of the following counties: Brevard, Broward, Collier, Lee,
Miami-Dade, Palm Beach, Sarasota and Volusia. This online survey is not based
on a probability sample and therefore no estimate of theoretical sampling
error can be calculated. For complete survey methodology, including weighting
variables, please visit

Florida Power & Light Company
Florida Power & Light Company is the largest rate-regulated electric utility
in Florida and serves the third-largest number of customers of any electric
utility in the United States. FPL serves approximately 4.6 million customer
accounts and is a leading Florida employer with approximately 10,000 employees
as of year-end 2012. During the five-year period ended December 31, 2012, the
company delivered the best service reliability among Florida investor-owned
utilities. As of year-end 2012, its typical residential customer bills are the
lowest in Florida, and based on data available in July 2012, are about 26
percent below the national average. A clean energy leader, FPL has one of the
lowest emissions profiles and one of the leading energy efficiency programs
among utilities nationwide. FPL is a subsidiary of Juno Beach, Fla.-based
NextEra Energy, Inc. (NYSE: NEE). For more information, visit

Harris Interactive
Harris Interactive is one of the world's leading market research firms,
leveraging research, technology, and business acumen to transform relevant
insight into actionable foresight. Known widely for the Harris Poll® and for
pioneering innovative research methodologies, Harris offers proprietary
solutions in the areas of market and customer insight, corporate brand and
reputation strategy, and marketing, advertising, public relations and
communications research. Harris possesses expertise in a wide range of
industries including health care, technology, public affairs, energy,
telecommunications, financial services, insurance, media, retail, restaurant,
and consumer package goods. Additionally, Harris has a portfolio of
multi-client offerings that complement our custom solutions while maximizing
our client's research investment. Serving clients in more than 196 countries
and territories through our North American and European offices, Harris
specializes in delivering research solutions that help us - and our
clients—stay ahead of what's next. For more information, please visit

SOURCE Florida Power & Light Company

Contact: Florida Power & Light, Media Line: (561) 694-4442,
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