Are you stressed by skyrocketing utility bills this summer? To reduce AC costs without sacrificing comfort, you should adopt energy-saving behaviors, implement low-cost changes and make strategic long-term investments. Here are 15 effective strategies to use.
Lowering air conditioning expenditures may be easier than you think. Here are some totally free ways to ease your monthly power bills:
1. Keep curtains and blinds closed: About 76 percent of the sunlight that streams onto standard double-pane windows gets into the building as heat. By closing out the sun by pulling insulating curtains and blinds over your south- and west-facing windows, you cut down on solar heat gain in the afternoon and reduce the demand for air conditioning.
2. Turn up the temperature: You can save up to three percent on your air conditioning expenses for each degree you increase the temperature. Try cranking up the temperature on your thermostat a tad higher than usual and using a fan to make up the difference.
3. Flip off the lights when not in use: Lights, especially incandescent bulbs, create a whole lot of heat. Turning them off when you aren’t in the room decreases the interior heat gain your air conditioning must combat.
4. Use appliances prudently: Wait to use heat-generating appliances like the oven, dryer and dishwasher until the cool time of the day. This technique lightens your AC’s load during the hot afternoon, lowering your bill and maximizing home comfort.
5. Run kitchen and bathroom exhaust fans: Eliminate heat and humidity while cooking and showering to reduce the workload on your AC.
If you’re willing to spend a few dollars, you can put an even larger dent in your air conditioning expenses. Here are some low-cost enhancements to consider:
6. Purchase a programmable thermostat: If you still have a traditional thermostat, consider upgrading. A programmable thermostat automatically modifies the temperature based on your routine. You can trim AC costs by up to 10 percent by turning the temperature back 7 to 10 degrees for eight hours per day. Thanks to automatic recovery periods, you can enjoy these savings without aggravation or discomfort.
7. Schedule regular maintenance: Your AC requires regular checkups to ensure it runs properly and efficiently. Maintenance visits every spring also provide a chance to identify and take care of small issues before they grow into expensive repairs. This small, predictable charge provides a significant return on investment through greater efficiency and helps your AC last as long as possible.
8. Seal leaks: In many homes, leaky windows and doors cause around 25 percent of its cooling energy use. Fix those pesky leaks with caulk and weatherstripping.
9. Use reflective window film: Window film reflects the sun’s rays to the exterior, decreasing solar heat gain. This budget-friendly upgrade is a very good way to improve your older windows’ efficiency without updating them.
10. Upgrade to LED lights: LEDs generate almost no heat and consume far less energy than traditional incandescent bulbs. These properties help keep your home cooler and lower lighting costs as well.
If you’re prepared to make more substantial improvements, explore the following investments to cut AC costs in the long run:
11. Insulate the attic: Hot air can leak through the ceiling if your attic isn’t sufficiently insulated. Peek inside the attic, and if you don’t see a deep, even layer of insulation, consider adding more. Depending on what kind of insulation you choose, you might need to employ a professional for the job.
12. Plant trees for natural shade: Planting leafy trees on the south and west sides of your house blocks sunlight and creates a cool microclimate around your home, naturally reducing your cooling demands.
13. Replace your windows: Old, single-pane windows let in quite a bit of heat, requiring your air conditioner to work harder. Installing double- or triple-pane windows with innovative glazing features elevates your home’s air-tightness and keeps the interior cooler.
14. Upgrade your AC system: Using an aging air conditioner costs more than you might think. Upgrading from a decade-old 10 SEER model to a modern-day 15 SEER unit can save you 33 percent on your AC bills. The savings opportunities of this purchase is even more if you’re willing to invest more up front.
15. Install solar panels: Solar panels convert sunlight into electricity to power your AC unit and other electric appliances. The ongoing savings, coupled with tax incentives available through 2035, make this a beneficial investment.
At Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing, we make the extra step to make sure our customers get top-notch HVAC services that help reduce air conditioning costs in the long run. Because of our premium products, Expert knowledge, and attention to detail, we feel confident backing our work with a 100% satisfaction guarantee. To learn more about how we can help minimize your summer cooling expenses, please contact the Experts at Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing. Schedule your appointment by calling 866-397-3787 today!
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