Save Money With These Energy Saving Tips
Blasting your air conditioning all summer long can drive your energy costs up and strain not only your AC unit but also your finances. Thankfully, there are many ways to conserve energy during the summer months so that you can cool off your home in more efficient ways and waste less money in the process. Here are 5 energy saving tips for the summer.
1. Clean Your Air Conditioner Filter
This tip is simple yet often overlooked. It’s important to check your air conditioner to ensure that it’s running smoothly and the filter is clean. A filter that is clogged can cause the air conditioning unit to run inefficiently. In fact, simply cleaning or replacing your filter can save you 5 to 10 percent on your energy costs, and it’s easy to do. You can also clean the outdoor unit yourself, following these instructions. If your air conditioner is quite old, you may want to consider replacing it with a newer model, as they tend to be more energy efficient and will save you money in the long run.
2. Use a Fan
They may not seem like they do much, but using a box fan or ceiling fan can help you reduce the amount of time you need to run your air conditioner. You can use a fan on cooler summer days or during the evening and early morning hours when it isn’t so warm out. Although fans don’t technically cool the air, by circulating the air around the room and taking body heat away, a fan helps cools you off. Using fans more often and only using air conditioning when necessary can help cut your summer energy costs by 40 percent. Your ceiling fan should be running in the counterclockwise position during summer.
3. Lower the Thermostat
Of all of the energy-saving tips out there, this one may be the simplest. Adjusting your thermostat by a few degrees can help reduce your energy costs significantly. You won’t notice if you increase the temperature by a few degrees. Many people keep their home thermostats set below 75 degrees, but experts say that every degree above 75 will save you an additional 10 to 15 percent in energy costs. You can even get a thermostat that will program temperatures for specific times of the day. It’s recommended that you sent your thermostat at 76 on warm days and crank it all the way up to 78 when you won’t be in your home all day.
4. Open Windows
Opening a few windows in your bedroom or throughout the house will create cross ventilation, which can effectively cool off your home if the air outside is cooler. If you live in an area where the nights get cool, it’s also smart to turn off your air conditioner and open the windows for the night. This will fill your home with cool air overnight so you won’t need air conditioning.
5. Get Blinds
If you have a lot of windows in your home that receive direct sunlight on clear days, they’re likely to get pretty warm. This causes your air conditioner to work harder and drives your energy costs up. You can help alleviate the strain on your system by getting blinds to block out the sunlight. Blackout drapes are another option to keep the sun from heating up your home.
If you’re concerned about the extra cost of keeping your home cool in the summer months, follow these tips to ensure that your utility bills are reasonable and your family is comfortable in your home. Taking little steps to cool your home in a more energy efficient manner can save you a significant amount of money each month.