As the warmer months approach, you may wonder how to keep your home cool and comfortable without sending your electricity bills through the roof. The secret lies in using your AC more efficiently. Follow these 12 simple recommendations and strategies to keep your air conditioner in optimal condition, minimize energy consumption and save money.
1. Leave the Thermostat Alone
Frequently changing the thermostat makes your cooling system work harder, raising energy consumption and causing excessive wear and tear. To boost efficiency, set the temperature at a comfortable level—preferably around 78 degrees F (25 degrees C)—when you’re in the house. After that, refrain from touching it. If you get overheated, peel away a layer of clothing, spray water on your skin or turn on a fan to cool off without changing the temperature.
2. Set the Temperature Back When You’re Away
For optimum savings, set the temperature 7-10 degrees above your usual setting for at least eight hours per day. To help you “set it and forget it,” it might be a good idea to consider installing a programmable thermostat. This convenient upgrade allows you to set temperatures based on your everyday routines, automatically changing the temperature to create a comfortable home when you’re there and saving energy when you’re out.
3. Keep the Curtains Closed
Solar heat gain from direct sunlight forces your cooling system to work more than it really should. To decrease heat gain, close the curtains over your south- and west-facing windows in the afternoon. Window coverings with light-colored backings reflect sunlight the best.
4. Keep the Vents Open
Covered or closed air vents throw off your HVAC system’s supply/return air balance, decreasing efficiency and increasing operating bills. To stop this, make sure to have at least 80 percent of your supply registers open and make certain no return vents are obstructed by curtains, furniture or rugs.
5. Create Airflow with Fans
Running fans in combination with your HVAC system circulates cool air more efficiently, making your home feel more comfortable while barely increasing energy consumption. Ceiling fans, specifically, create a wind chill effect that makes the room feel about 4 degrees cooler, allowing you to set the temperature higher without losing comfort.
6. Get Rid of Hot and Humid Air
Cooking and showering create heat and humidity. Use your kitchen and bathroom exhaust fans during these activities to decrease your home’s cooling load. Additionally, make sure your clothes dryer vents to the outdoors to stop hot, humid air from releasing into your house.
7. Use a Dehumidifier
High humidity levels cause your home to feel cool but clammy, tempting you to lower the temperature. A dehumidifier takes away unwanted moisture, making your home feel cooler and more comfortable while consuming substantially less electricity than running the air conditioner.
8. Install Your Outdoor AC Unit in the Shade
The outdoor unit’s location affects its effectiveness considerably. Installing it on your home’s north or east side protects it in the afternoon for more effective heat transfer. If the unit gets direct sunlight at the hottest hours of the day, consider planting a tree or using a screen to shade it. Just be sure that any plant or structure you add doesn’t hamper airflow.
9. Save Your Chores for the Evening
Cooking, laundry and doing the dishes create indoor heat gain, making your AC work harder. Doing these activities in the evening when temperatures cool down reduces the cooling load during the hottest hours of the day and saves energy.
10. Replace the Air Filter
A filthy filter blocks airflow and increases energy consumption, so be sure to exchange it routinely to promote maximum performance. Most basic filters should be replaced every 30 to 90 days, but consult the manufacturer’s recommendations for the recommended replacement schedule for your product.
11. Seal and Insulate the Ductwork
Leaky, uninsulated ducts squander significant amounts of energy, especially if they run through unconditioned spots in your home like the attic, crawl space or garage. Sealing and insulating your ductwork maintains system efficiency and lowers energy expenses.
12. Schedule Preventative AC Maintenance
Scheduled tune-ups are recommended to keep your air conditioner running properly. Use an accredited technician to inspect, clean and service your system every spring. This preventative measure extends your HVAC system's life span, reduces energy consumption, and allows the technician to identify and deal with potential issues before they become costly problems.
Request Air Conditioning Service in Melbourne
At Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning, we pride ourselves on offering complete AC services, which include quality installation, maintenance, repair and replacement in Melbourne. Our customers choose us again and again for our unmatched expertise and commitment to customer satisfaction. In fact, we offer a 100 percent satisfaction guarantee on every service we provide! Work with our friendly staff to keep your home cool, comfortable and energy efficient this summer.