Our tips for keeping your air conditioning bills in check.
The temperature is rising. You feel like you’re swimming through a bowl of hot soup. You’re dying to turn the AC on full blast and turn your home into an igloo, but giant dollar signs block your path to the thermostat.
The electricity costs that come with staying comfortable can be hefty, but if you play your cards right, you can knock those numbers down and keep cool at the same time. By following these tips and tricks to reducing your electricity usage, you’ll not only make your wallet happy, but you’ll reduce your carbon footprint by being thrifty with your electricity usage.
Keep chill, and follow these energy saving tricks.
These are easy, no or low cost methods to conserving your power usage, and you’ll see the results in your next bill.
1. Close your curtains and shades.
Whatever your type of home, whether it be a tiny studio apartment or a large house, blocking out the sun and enclosing your pad in shade is a good way to keep internal temperatures down. But there’s a little more to it than that though.
Insulated and/or reflective shades will help stop the light and heat from invading your space, hence keeping your internal temperatures lower. Lower temperatures means less AC usage. Perhaps you don’t have the money to invest in the fancy shades and curtains. That’s fine. Light colored curtains or shades can achieve the same effect. Light color reflects light, while dark color absorbs it. Whatever your circumstances, lining your home with proper treatments is an investment you’ll see returned to you every summer with lower energy costs.
2. Run your fans.
Running your ceiling or floor fan and getting the air flowing through your home will make the air feel cooler, and gentle breeze will make you feel more comfortable. If you run your AC at the same time, using the fans will help circulate the air more efficiently through your living space, and you’ll be able to raise the thermostat a few degrees without feeling the difference. Always remember to turn off the fans when you’re not around or not home. Don’t use unnecessary energy!
3. Plug up those drafts.
You’re trying to cool down your home, not the world. Don’t let your precious cool air creep out of creaks, cracks and poorly insulated doors and windows. You can always have an energy auditor out to check over your home and help you make it more energy efficient, but if you’re reading this article then maybe you’re not ready to spend that money. That’s ok. Head outside and run your hands along the edges of all of your doors and windows. If you can feel cool air escaping, then it’s time to reseal those edges and get some draft blockers for the doors. You’ll be amazing how big a difference it makes when your air is trapped inside with you.
4. Don’t run your AC unnecessarily.
If you’re not home, there’s no reason to have the AC running all day while you’re gone. Turn your thermostat as high as comfortably possible for when you’re away. The closer the indoor temperature to the outdoor, the lower the cost will be. When you do get home, don’t turn down the temp to lower than normal, this won’t actually cool your home any faster. Rather, turn it to your normal temperature, and utilize your fans to disperse the air accordingly.
5. Keep your equipment well-maintained and up-to-date.
The harder your AC has to work at keeping your home cool, the higher your bill will be. Keeping the filters clean and making sure the area around your unit is kept clear, whether inside or out, will help insure optimal efficiency.
It’s also a good idea (and highly recommended) that you have your HVAC or AC system inspected and tuned professionally once or twice a year.
6. Don’t fill your house with heat when you’re trying to cool it.
Avoid running your clothes dryer or your dishwasher, as these emit heat and will be counterproductive to cooling your home. Also avoid using your stove, even with an exhaust fan. Instead, opt to grill your food outside or use your microwave.
Do you have a lot of computers and entertainment equipment? These electronics also emit a lot of heat, so if you must use them, make sure that you’ve got air flowing in those rooms to offset the increased heat.
DMS Air can advise you on more ways to adjust your home.