Are you burdened by escalating utility bills this summer? To cut AC costs without sacrificing comfort, you should adopt energy-saving behaviors, implement low-cost changes and make strategic long-term investments. Here are 15 proven tips to consider.
Adopt Good Energy Habits
Cutting air conditioning costs may be easier than you imagine. Here are some completely free ways to ease your monthly energy bills:
1. Keep curtains and blinds closed: Roughly 76 percent of the sunlight that hits standard double-pane windows enters as heat. By blocking out the sun with insulating curtains and blinds over your south- and west-facing windows, you cut down on solar heat gain in the afternoon and reduce the need for air conditioning.
2. Turn up the temperature: You can save up to three percent on your cooling bills for each degree you elevate the temperature. Try establishing a temperature on your thermostat a tad higher than usual and operating a fan to make up the difference.
3. Switch off the lights when not in use: Lights, especially incandescent bulbs, produce quite a lot of heat. Turning them off when you aren't in the room reduces 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 approach relieves some of your AC’s burden during the hot afternoon, bringing down 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 cooling system.
Invest in Low-Cost Upgrades
If you’re willing to part with a few dollars, you can put an even greater dent in your cooling costs. Here are some low-cost improvements to consider:
6. Set up a programmable thermostat: If you still have a traditional thermostat, consider upgrading. A programmable thermostat automatically adjusts the temperature based on your activities. You can cut AC expenditures by up to 10 percent by setting the temperature back 7 to 10 degrees for eight hours a day. Thanks to automatic recovery periods, you can appreciate these savings without aggravation or discomfort.
7. Schedule regular maintenance: Your air conditioner needs scheduled checkups to make sure it runs properly and efficiently. Maintenance visits every spring also offer a chance to identify and deal with little issues before they grow into expensive repairs. This small, predictable cost provides a substantial return on investment through improved efficiency and prolonged equipment life span.
8. Seal leaks: In lots of homes, leaky windows and doors are responsible for about 25 percent of its cooling energy use. Fix those pesky leaks with caulk and weatherstripping.
9. Add reflective window film: Window film reflects the sun’s rays to the outside, limiting 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 use far less energy than traditional incandescent bulbs. These attributes help keep your home more comfortable and cut down on lighting costs as well.
Consider Long-Term Home Investments
If you’re ready93 to make more significant modifications, explore the following investments to cut cooling costs in the long run:
11. Insulate the attic: Hot air can seep through the ceiling if your attic isn’t sufficiently insulated. Peer inside the attic, and if you don’t see a substantial, even layer of insulation, consider adding more. Depending on what form of insulation you select, you might need to contact a professional for the job.
12. Plant trees for natural shade: Planting leafy trees on the south and west sides of your house obstructs sunlight and generates a cool microclimate around your home, naturally reducing your cooling needs.
13. Replace your windows: Old, single-pane windows let in quite a bit of heat, making your HVAC system to work harder. Replacing single-pane windows with double- or triple-pane windows with innovative glazing features improves your home’s air-tightness and keeps the interior cooler.
14. Upgrade your AC system: Using an aging air conditioner is more expensive than you might think. Upgrading from a decade-old 10 SEER model to a modern 15 SEER unit can save you 33 percent on your air conditioning expenses. The savings potential 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 run your air conditioner and other electric appliances. The ongoing cost savings, coupled with tax incentives available through 2035, make this a beneficial investment.
Save More on Your AC in Austin With Help From Strand Brothers Service Experts
At Strand Brothers Service Experts, we go the extra mile to deliver133 excellent HVAC services that help decrease air conditioning costs in the long run. Because of our superior products, Expert knowledge and attention to detail, we feel secure backing our work with a 100% satisfaction guarantee. To learn more about how we can help reduce your summer AC expenses, please reach out to the Experts at Strand Brothers Service Experts. Schedule your appointment today by calling 512-592-3072 !