Those of us that live in the South know that staying comfortable in the heat and humidity can make your electric bill skyrocket. But staying cool in the summer doesn’t have to equal shelling out lots of money and wasting electricity. Read on to learn some important tips to keep your air conditioning costs down all through the summer.
Windows Are Key
During the summer when air conditioning becomes a necessity, you may only think about your windows to make sure they are shut. But windows can be the key to saving money in the long term when it comes to air conditioning costs.
If your home has windows that haven’t been upgraded, installing new energy-efficient windows can dramatically help to keep your house cooler for less.
Making sure that your windows are properly sealed also helps. If your windows are insufficiently sealed they can leak air, making your air conditioning system work harder.
Sunbeams coming directly through the window can heat up a room as much as 10 to 20 degrees Fahrenheit. Keep heat and sun out of your rooms, especially rooms whose windows are east-facing in the morning and west-facing in the late afternoon, by using blackout curtains. These curtains made with white linings reflect the sun’s rays away from the room’s interior and can reduce solar heat gain by up to 33 percent.
Invest in Upgrades
While upgrades to the equipment in your home may mean more costs upfront, they will save you money in the long run. Upgrading to a programmable thermostat can easily decrease your air conditioning bill by up to 10 percent if you use it to set your A/C as high as you can comfortably go and program it to increase the temperature while you are not at home or asleep. Setting your thermostat to 78°F instead of 72°F can save up to 18 percent of your summer air conditioning costs.
If you are able, upgrading your air conditioning unit might save you the most money. Modernizing your air conditioning unit can be an expensive immediate solution that can save you a ton of money in the long run. Since cooling your air in the summer can easily account for up to 50 percent of your summer energy bill, installing an energy efficient unit can lower this cost dramatically. Newer air conditioners can also increase the quality of the air inside your home while doing a better job of controlling your home’s humidity levels.
Circulate The Air
Using fans in your house to circulate air can make you feel six or seven degrees cooler due to the wind-chill effect. While fans do not actually cool the air, they do blow air around making easier for the sweat to evaporate from your skin. Since we eliminate body heat by sweating (even when it isn’t noticeable to you), the more evaporation, the cooler you feel. The great thing about fans is that since they don’t cool the room, you can turn them off as soon as you leave any area, saving you money on electricity. Portable fans can be an inexpensive way to keep your cooling costs down. Ceiling fans also help circulate cool air from your air conditioner which can allow you to raise your thermostat by as much as four degrees.
Enjoy the Outdoors
Another important way to keep your air conditioning costs down is to make sure that you don’t heat up the interior of your home during peak heat hours. This can be tough as temperatures typically reach their height in the afternoon when it is time to cook dinner. One of the best ways to keep costs down is to cook dinner using your microwave, serve dishes that don’t require heat, or make use of your deck or patio by grilling your dinner outdoors.
Spending warm summer nights grilling dinner and eating it out on your patio requires some maintenance and love. Luckily, Ned Stevens can help you with your summer preparation needs and deck care needs. Ned Stevens provides soft wash services that clean your deck so you can have amazing summer dinners with your family outside and help keep air conditioning costs down.