During the hot summer months it is all too easy to crank up the air conditioning and forget about the energy being used to keep you comfortable and away from the heat. Until your electricity bill arrives that is! Luckily there are a few simple things you can do in your home to help lower these costs significantly.
- Open and de-clog vents:
In order for your central air conditioning to work at peak efficiency, all vents in your home should be open and free of dirt, dust, and debris clogs. Some people may suggest closing vents in certain areas of the home in order to save on cooling costs, but this is not true and will, in fact, just make your system work harder trying to maintain the right temperature throughout the home. Check air filters and replace them regularly in order to promote peak airflow in your vents.
- Promote good airflow throughout your home:
Creating and maintaining a comfortable temperature inside your home requires good airflow. Unless your home is small, it can be hard for central air conditioning systems to maintain equal and comfortable temperatures throughout your entire home, often resulting in hot and cold spots. Luckily a few strategically placed fans can help circulate air, ensuring that your air conditioning system doesn’t have to work too hard. Ceiling mounted fans should be running counter-clockwise during the summer in order to help push the hot air up and out of the home.
- Install a programmable thermostat:
One of the best ways to ensure that your home’s air conditioning system is not using more power than it needs to be is by installing a programmable thermostat. These thermostats allow you set specific temperatures for different parts of the day, reducing energy usage for cooling while you’re not home.
- Purchase and install heavy drapes:
Windows that receive lots of intense afternoon sun can significantly heat the air inside the home, raising temperatures by as much as 10°. Installing heavy drapes over these windows is a great way to prevent these extra heat from entering the home and thus prevent your air conditioner from having to work overtime to cool it back down.
Many of these suggestions can be just as helpful in the winter by helping your home hold onto that precious warmth. Simply switch your ceiling fans to run clockwise so they push hot air back down towards you and set your programmable thermostat colder while you are not home and you will see equal savings during the winter months!