From Kevin Jones on May 15, 2014 in Energy Efficiency
Every fall we hear plenty of tips about how to save energy during the winter months. But what about summer? Energy consumption in the summer can be just as great as it is in the winter, especially in environments with lots of sunshine and excessive heat. This would include many areas of the deep South and the Southwest. If you live in one of these areas, don’t worry. There are plenty of things you can do to reduce your energy bills.
To start with, think about your air conditioning. Running central air all summer can be as expensive as running a furnace all winter in the North. Saving energy is about finding ways to use your air conditioner less without sacrificing your comfort.
Check Your Windows and Doors
A home with drafty windows and doors is a home that is energy inefficient. Remember that cool air from your AC can escape as long as air from the outside can get in. Check all windows and doors to make sure they seal tightly around all edges. Also check bathroom vents to make sure baffles are closing properly when the events are not in use. It is also recommended to make sure you have energy efficient windows. Learn more about the cost of window replacement.
AC Maintenance Checkup
The spring is a great time to have your heating and cooling company provide an annual maintenance checkup on your system. Checkups are important if you want your air conditioning unit to work at maximum efficiency. The technician will probably change your filter along with inspecting all of the ductwork. If necessary, he’ll also recharge the refrigerant in your system.
You can save a lot of energy by managing your thermostat properly. For most people, a setting somewhere around 78° is suitable when you’re home. When you’re going to be away, consider raising the temperature to about 85°. This will enable the air-conditioning to run less often but still make it possible to cool your house quickly upon your return.
Many people are surprised by how much energy they save simply by investing in good window treatments. By keeping those treatments closed during the heat of the day, you’ll be able to keep the temperature down inside. That means less money spent on air-conditioning.
Try Using Fans
If your home is equipped with ceiling fans, be sure to use them as often as you can. You’ll feel a lot cooler without having to lower the setting on your thermostat. Just be sure to turn off fans when you’re not in the room. Why? Because they don’t actually reduce the temperature in the room. You’re wasting energy by running a ceiling fan when no one is around.
Change Your Routine
Lastly, a few changes in your regular routine could go a long way toward saving energy. For example, consider taking advantage of the warm weather to dry your laundry on an outdoor line. You won’t have to run the dryer quite as often. You can also try running the dishwasher at night, after the sun goes down. Remember that the dishwasher produces heat. The less heat you’re producing during the daylight hours, the less your air-conditioning needs work.
Saving energy during the summer is a matter of thinking smart. So be good to yourself this summer. Take a look around and see what you can do to reduce your energy consumption.