How to Cut Down on Air-Conditioning Costs
According to the US Department of Energy, heating and cooling your home accounts for 43 percent of your home’s total monthly energy bill. Here are some tips on how to reduce air-conditioning costs in the summer:
- Upgrade to an energy-efficient system. The absolute best way to reduce your electricity costs is to invest in a newer and a more efficient system, especially when your current AC is more than 10 years old. Newer systems are more efficient because they can heat or cool a home 30 percent more efficiently for the same cost. Make sure to choose the correct sizing and SEER rating for your AC system as these are very important factors in measuring efficiency. Choose your installers carefully. According to the US Department of Energy, improper installation can cause up to a 27 percent energy loss. Find an installer who is part of the Energy Star Quality Installation program.
- Go for annual AC servicing. At first, you may feel like you’re increasing your AC expenses, but having your system serviced is a wise expenditure. Doing it annually can improve the efficiency of your system and identify problems before they get worse and expensive. Having annual AC servicing also provides long-term advantages such as increased lifespan for your equipment. It is important the refrigerant, evaporator coil, compressor and condenser of your unit should be inspected during the annual checkup.
- Replace your air filters regularly. Changing out your air filter every couple of months can reduce your AC’s energy consumption by 5%-15%. Change it out every month during the summer months.
- Get a thermostat. Energy Star and the EIA recommend that you install and use a programmable thermostat. With it, you can set your AC unit to automatically adjust the temperature when you’re not at home, or when you’re sleeping at night. For the highest efficiency, try keeping the temperature at 78 degrees Fahrenheit when you’re home and slightly increase it to 85 degrees Fahrenheit when you’re away. Also, set the AC fan speed lower during humid days so it removes moisture in the room more efficiently.
- Turn on your fan. Doing this means you can turn the temperature up on your air conditioning unit by about 4 degrees. It removes humidity in the air so our bodies feel cooler. A fan also helps circulate the cool air in the room. Just don’t forget to turn the fan off once you leave the room to save energy.
- Plant trees around your house, if the situation allows it. A big portion of heat that accumulates inside a house comes directly from the sunlight that shines through the windows or the roof. When you plant trees around your home’s exterior, the sun’s rays will no longer reach the inside of your home. It has been found by the US Department of Energy when trees or shrubs shade your air conditioner, you could boost your AC’s efficiency by about 10 percent.
- Use your basement, but don’t open its windows when outdoor air is packed with humidity because warm, moist air will make the basement humid. So find ways to chill out in your basement. You’ll discover its cooler down there.
We hope these tips have helped you. Do you have eco-friendly tips on air-conditioning? Share it with us!