Warm weather is on its way, and if you want to stay cool this summer, you’re going to need to run your air conditioner. Unfortunately, the more that you run it, the more expensive your energy bills could get. Incorporate a few of these energy-saving tips into your routine if you want to cut down on the amount of money that you spend while still maintaining a comfortable home temperature during the hot summer months.
One of the best ways to lower your monthly cooling bills is to make sure that your air conditioner is always well-maintained. As dust settles and gets into the blower and ductwork, the air conditioner has to work harder to push air through the system. Some AC models require lubrication to ensure the parts of the motor move freely. A qualified HVAC technician can perform all routine maintenance for your AC unit from cleaning out the dust from the condensate lines and air ducts to evaluating the unit for any signs of possible problems.
Another potential way of saving money over the long term is to replace your current AC unit. This is a smart choice if your current system is nearing 15 to 20 years, you’ve noticed that your bills have been getting higher, or repairs are becoming more frequent. Aace's Heating, Air Conditioning & Swamp Coolers offers the insider expertise that you want when you’re searching for a new air conditioner. We’ll help you understand what size of a unit you need according to the size of your home, and we’ll help you understand the SEER ratings on the available units. We’ll even help you keep the cost of the air conditioner down by helping you look for units that offer rebates.
3. Use Your Ceiling and Portable Fans
When you’re trying to cut down on your energy bills while still keeping you and your family comfortable, ceiling fans can provide a lot of benefits. One of the primary advantages of using a fan is that you can localize your cooling instead of cooling the entire house. Air from a fan speeds up the evaporation of sweat from your skin, pulling heat away from your body in the process. This makes you feel cooler even though the temperature isn’t any lower.
4. Open a Window at Night
Summer days often get warm, but as the sun goes down, the temperatures begin to drop. This is a great time to let nature cool your house for you while you sleep, especially if the humidity is also low. Not only do most people sleep better when they’re cool, but opening your windows will also help cool your entire house. Just keep in mind that you need to close the windows in the morning before the temperatures begin their slow climb.
5. Use Blinds and Curtains
When the sun is up, make sure your curtains and blinds are shut. When the sun is blazing through an uncovered window, you’ll notice the house’s temperature going up, too. Blackout curtains are one of the best ways to reduce energy exchange, especially in rooms that have large windows that often get a lot of sunlight. Even a blind will help cut down on some of the sunlight entering the room during peak sunlight hours.
6. Make Sure That Your Home Is Sealed
If your home is drafty in the winter, those same cracks that allow cold air inside will also allow heat to seep in. Windows and doors are some of the most common places for heat exchange to occur, and there are some pretty simple techniques that you can use to keep the heat and humidity outside. First of all, you can install weatherstripping along the bottoms, sides, and tops of doors that lead to the exterior. You can also use caulk to seal up joints in wood-frame windows.
Additionally, we normally think of insulation as a way to keep the heat inside your house in the winter, but it also helps keep the house cooler in the summer by blocking the heat from entering the home through the roof and walls. So if you’ve been thinking about waiting until the fall to bulk up on insulation, you might want to push that project forward a bit. You might be interested to learn that you can even have heat exchange through the electrical outlets on outside walls. To prevent this, install foam gaskets behind the covers of these outlets.
7. Install a Smart Thermostat
A smart thermostat is one of the best investments that you could make for the efficiency of your home this year. There’s no point in having your air conditioner running when you and your family are gone, but you might still want your home to be at a comfortable temperature when you return after work. With a smart thermostat, you can adjust the temperature and time that your air conditioner starts running depending on the time that you plan on being home. For instance, if you don’t plan on coming back from vacation until a day later than you were originally intending, then you can just adjust your thermostat from your smartphone.
If you’re out and you don’t have the air conditioner set to turn on but you have pets at home that you’re worried about, you can turn the air on from where you are. You can also track your energy usage and set schedules that work for your lifestyle. A smart thermostat can even remind you to change your filter, which will further help with the efficiency of your air conditioner.
8. Be Mindful of When You Run Your AC and the Temperature You Set
Many cities have peak usage times when it’s more expensive to use electricity. If you try to avoid cooling your house during these times, you could save yourself a lot of money in the long run. Additionally, you can be mindful of the temperature to which you set your air conditioner. Many experts recommend keeping your thermostat at 78 degrees. There’s a good biological reason for letting your house stay warmer in the summer than in the winter. Your body adjusts within a few weeks to the heat by changing the salt concentrations and moving the blood vessels closer to the skin so that heat can escape the body more quickly. In other words, even if it feels hot now, once you adjust you’ll feel comfortable and save money, too.
9. Cook Outside
Ovens and stoves can create a lot of heat inside the home. If you want to avoid the heat build-up, commit to grilling or eating out at least once or twice per week. You can also choose to make meals that don’t require cooking such as cold salads and sandwiches.
10. Invest In Shade Trees
While it will be several years before you reap the rewards of your investment, shade trees can offer lots of benefits when you plan on staying in your home for many years. The right trees in the right areas of your home will prevent the sunlight from beating in on the roof of your home and through the windows, which can significantly reduce the temperature inside the house.
When you’re interested in saving money on your electric bills this summer, contacting Aace's Heating, Air Conditioning & Swamp Coolers is a great way to find many heating and cooling services, including heating and cooling maintenance, installation, and repairs. Contact Aace's Heating, Air Conditioning & Swamp Coolers when you’re ready to find out more.