Cooling costs typically account for around half of your home’s overall energy budget. When it’s hot outside, you want to keep cool indoors, but there are a few things you can do to lower your bill. From proper ventilation to thermostat hacks, there are several simple changes you can make that will result in a nice reduction of energy costs and consumption. Read on for a few helpful tips that will keep your home’s A/C bill lower during the summer months.
Keep the A/C Off when You Don’t Use It
If you can handle it, consider turning your air conditioning off at night while you’re sleeping. You can also turn it off when you leave for work each day if no one will be home. Both of these simple changes can result in massive energy savings. Your thermostat should be set around 75 to 80 degrees during the summer, too. For every degree the thermostat is increased, it can cost an additional four to eight percent in energy costs. You can also install a programmable thermostat that will automatically adjust the temperature in your home depending on your desired settings and your schedule.
Perform an Insulation Audit
Improper or insufficient insulation can cause air leakage and poor energy efficiency. When there are cracks and openings in your home, the cold air escapes right out. This not only makes the A/C unit work harder, but it’s also a waste of energy and money. Do a small insulation audit and check for areas around windows and doors where air may be getting out. Add weather stripping to any area where you see light coming through. You can also caulk cracks around door and window frames to help seal the cold air in.
Clean All A/C Vents and Units
All of the filers, coils, and fins on your air conditioning unit must be clean in order to function properly and efficiently. It’s easy to forget about these components, but regularly cleaning will ensure your home is getting proper airflow and an increase in energy efficiency. Inspect these items and look for dirt and other debris, then clean them thoroughly. You should also check your air filter every month and replace it whenever it becomes dirty. By cleaning the vents and components of the A/C system, you’re allowing the air to circulate and keep all parts operating the way they should. A dirty unit can also increase the risk of damage, resulting in expensive repairs.
Other Quick Fixes
There are a few other easy things you can do to lower your home’s cooling bill. Add ceiling fans in rooms that you spend a lot of time and put them on the counter-clockwise setting during the summer. Block out extra light by using blinds or light-blocking window curtains. Open windows at night if it’s cooler to get better ventilation and circulation of clean air throughout your home. These simple changes can be extremely effective in saving you on energy and money.