Staying Cool In Houston During The Summer #reliantsummer (Schlitterbahn giveaway)

There’s no doubt about it. It’s about to get hot in Houston. Summer solstice was last weekend and even though it’s been warm here for quite awhile, it really is true – summer has just gotten started. July and August bring the worst of the summer heat and we often break up the days with some indoor activities. We like to visit the library, our neighborhood bowling alley where kids bowl free all summer, the movie theatre and museums.

Keeping it cool inside can be costly this time of year. I cringe when I see our electricity bill in July and August. Do you?

To help us manage our electricity bill, Reliant has provided the following top ten energy usage tips:

  1. Install a programmable thermostat to save an estimated 10% a year on heating and cooling costs.
  2. Set your TV to the “home” or “standard” screen setting. The “vivid” or “retail” settings are unnecessarily bright and burn 20% more power.
  3. Lower the temperature settings on your water heater from 140 degrees to 120 degrees. It saves money and still feels nice and hot.
  4. Switch your ceiling fan to turn in a counter-clockwise direction in the summer.
  5. Change your AC filters at least once a month.
  6. Use microwave and toaster ovens to cook or warm leftovers. You’ll use less energy than cooking with conventional oven.
  7. Wash full loads of clothes when possible. When smaller loads are necessary, use less water.
  8. Grill out more often during the summer. Using the oven in the heat of summer forces your AC to work harder, which raises your energy bill.
  9. Set your thermostat 4 degrees higher when you’re away for more than 4 hours to help reduce electricity usage.
  10. Turn off your computer before bed each night and before leaving for the day. Set the computer’s sleep mode.

I’m pretty good about setting the thermostat higher when we aren’t home, using the grill instead of the oven and washing a full load of laundry each time (folding it right away is another story!) but I’m embarrassed about how long it’s been since I changed our AC filters and didn’t even think about lower the settings on my water heater.

What about you? Have you had any luck with any of these tips? Do you have any different ones to share?

Jackson Galveston

When we do play outside, we spend a lot of time in the water. We just got back from a trip to SeaWorld and Aquatica in San Antonio. We go every year and the kids had a blast. We are so excited about planning a day-trip to Schlitterbahn in Galveston soon. Reliant asked if we wanted to be their guests to cool off at the water park. Um, yes – please!!!


Reliant just launched a new plan, Predictable 12, where they predict your electricity bill for 12 months. With this plan electricity costs stay the same every month, for 12 months, with no surprises no extra fees and no spiked bills due to the summer season!  

In addition to the energy savings tips and the chance to save money on your electric bill, Reliant is also providing one, lucky Still Living The Dream reader the chance to cool off at Schlitterbahn with their family for free, too! Sound good?

schlitterbahn logo


Do you want four free tickets worth $300.00 to Schlitterbahn in Galveston?

From now until Sunday, June 30, 2014, leave a comment with how many 100+ degree days you predict there will be in Houston during the month of July. On August 1, the number of days it was 100+ degrees in Houston during July will be determined according to Hobby airport. The person who guesses it right (or comes the closest) will get a four-pack of tickets! In the event that more than one person has the correct or closest answer, a winner will be selected at random.

I was given tickets to Schlitterbahn to keep cool during the summer with my family. No other compensation was received and all opinions are my own. 



  1. 1
    Melanie says:

    I think there will be 13 days of 100 +.

  2. 2
    Julie F says:

    I predict 18 days! 🙂

  3. 3

    I predict 16 days of 100-degrees plus!

  4. 4
    Lisa Coltharp says:

    I’m going to guess 23 days!

  5. 5

    I think it will feel like 30 but there will be 4…

  6. 6
    Shelly Allen says:

    My answer is 1!!!!!! Fingers crossed!!!

  7. 7

    I think there will be 22 days!

  8. 8
    tess says:

    I’m gonna take a stab and say
    14 days

    i hope i’m right- my kids could really use this vacation- how many times can i comment?

    thanks for the chance
    tcogbill at live dot com

  9. 9
    Tanya Avery says:

    I predict 3 days of 100+ in July. But I hope it will be 0!

  10. 10
    Julie Mayer says:

    I predict 3 days of 100 degree days in the month of July in Houston! I’m being very optimistic!

  11. 11
    Alison Shaw says:

    I predict there will be 7 days in Houston that will hit 100+ in July

  12. 12
    Kara janda says:

    Pick me!

    • 12.1
      Jennifer Patrick says:

      Hey Kara! How many days do you think it will reach three digits in July? Take a guess! 🙂

  13. 13
    Sheri marie abner says:

    I predict there will be 12 100+ temp days in July

  14. 14
    teri sarver says:

    I think there will be 5!

  15. 15
    Eva says:

    I predict 2 days in Houston with 100+ degrees in July.

  16. 16
    Chris says:

    I say 0 days in July with 100+ temp for Houston.

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