A $50,000 electric bill? The cost of cooling L.A.’s biggest houses in a heat wave this summer has reached $30,000.
The average single-family home in Los Angeles County sold for nearly $2 million in 2013-2014, the highest in California history, according to the Los Angeles Times.
But when air conditioning costs are factored in, the price tag is much higher. The average cost to cool an average single-family California home in a heat wave has reached $50,000, according to data from the L.A. Department of Water and Power’s Energy and Resource Solutions Department.
That includes the initial installation and the monthly maintenance costs, which can rise to $50,000 a year, depending on the length of the heat wave.
But it doesn’t include cooling that is needed during a heat wave because the house is too hot; or heating that has to be turned off because the house is too cold.
The department keeps tabs on the cost of air conditioning by comparing three days of historic sales data from the L.A. County Assessor’s Office to historic demand for heat during major power outages.
If the current energy crisis is a wakeup call, then we are living in a nation where the average American family will pay as much as $60,000 to cool off during a heat wave.
There is no shortage of air conditioners or water. The supply of power is plentiful and cheap. It’s just getting used to using the air conditioners.
A new report, “What’s Driving the California Energy Crisis?, estimates that by mid-century, every large city in the United States could be home to 3 million households with air conditioners.
But a big problem is not just how much consumers are paying to cool down their homes, but why.
The cost of heating is fixed and controlled by building codes. But, the research done by The Examiner found that building codes are not keeping up with the changes in homeowners’ choices – especially when it comes to cooling.
The result has been a dramatic increase in the use of air conditioners at less-than-adequate temperatures.
The problem can be seen when looking at an average home in Los Angeles County, where the average temperature in July was a