Tucson Electric Power installs smart thermostats in low-income apartment complexes


Tucson Electric Power is giving away smart thermostats to limited-income apartment residents who want to conserve energy.

Nearly 1,800 Nest Learning Thermostats are being installed in apartments throughout the greater Tucson area as part of a new pilot energy efficiency program. The thermostats automatically adapt to each space within a week or so of installation, knowing when to warm or cool a home when the residents are away. This helps save a lot of energy while the residents are out.

“It’s important to offer new, innovative products to our customers in this rapidly changing technology market,” Desiree Dillard, a TEP energy efficiency program coordinator, said. 

Nest claims that customers typically save 10 to 12 percent on heating bills and 15 percent on cooling bills when using these smart thermostats.

The thermostats go along with a package of energy-saving materials given to customers qualifying for limited-income programs. Other items in the packs include efficient LED and CFL lightbulbs, as well as faucet aerators and low-flow showerheads.

These packages are available in affordable-housing complexes that are run purely on electricity.

TEP’s sister company, UniSource Energy Services, is also providing the Nest thermostats to more than 200 residents of apartment complexes in Nogales and Kingman.

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