We have been TECO customers for 20+ years and honestly we've not had a problem until 2 1/2 years ago. We were leasing a 3,500 sq.ft. two-story home with 2 HVAC systems; 1 for upstairs and 1 for downstairs, The home was built in 1987. We lived there for 2 years with power bills during the summer months of $250 and high of $380. In 2011 we decided it was time to get out of this energy hog house and find something to lease much smaller. I should mention here we are in our 60s with limited income. (All you young whippersnappers need to read this!)
We found a nice 2,000 sq. ft. home in SunCityCenter, one 3-1/2 ton HVAC, and the property manager assured us the HVAC was 6-years old and had been completely serviced. So we moved in last March. Our first month's TECO bill was over $200. Now keep in mind, March in Florida is not that warm, temperatures are mild. We notified the property manager and an electrician was called as well as an HVAC repairman. They couldn't find anything wrong. Second power bill came in over $200 again and again in the following months. Our billing for August-September came in at $340! I called TECO.
In July 2012 we had TECO Home Energy Audit to come in and advise us what we needed to do to get our power bills down. We had already placed a 3M product window insulating film in all 3 large single-pane windows across the back of the house. And additionally keep all the vertical blinds closed. We keep all the blinds in the house closed during the day. We lowered the water heater thermostat. We replaced all the light fixture bulbs (most used fixtures) to the TECO recommended energy efficient bulbs. We keep the HVAC filter changed every 4 weeks. We raised the HVAC thermostat to 80 degrees during the day. We've done everything to try and get our bills down!
TECO advised me this morning (after speaking with 3 representatives) maybe it is the HVAC needs cleaning! I asked to have our billing due date changed to the 15th of the month. Nope, wouldn't do that. But they offered, that is if I paid my balance to zero, to set payments up on the 20th through automatic bank draft. My question was, how can I pay to zero when the billing is running so high plus charging us a $5.00 late fee for paying on the 14th of the month? TECO management has gone from superior to into the dirt over the last few years. I could go on, on but I'm running out of room. Hope someone can stop TECO's request for a rate hike!