How to Reduce Air Conditioning Cost
We’re living through some very difficult financial times right now with rising fuel costs, higher interest rates, rising inflation and the after-effects of COVID supply chain issues. We’ve seen an interest from customers who want to lower their AC bill during the summer’s hottest days. We’ve compiled a few tips and ideas to help out.
Ideas That Require Some Investment
- If you have an air conditioner that’s more than 10 years old, you may need to consider an upgrade. Yes, this is an added expense, however your AC is using far more power than newer models. Also older AC’s require more repairs and most likely won’t be able to be repaired when leaking as older models used refrigerant which contained hydrochlorofluorocarbons and is now banned from the marketplace.
Nobody wants to replace their AC but energy efficient models will help you recoup cost in the long run and they do cool a home faster and operate much quieter.
- Make sure to change filters and ensure the HVAC system is clean and free of dust buildup. Read the manufacturer’s specs as to how often your filter needs replacing and change it more frequently if you have pets, smokers in the house or excessive dust buildup. A dirty filter will increase your utility bill.
- Every spring before the hot weather have your HVAC system maintained by professionals who can inspect and check the system, including ventilation, to ensure your AC will operate to maximum efficiency. Having your AC maintained will also reduce the risk of breaking down when you need the cooling during the hotter summer months.
- Smart thermostats are a must-have as the latest thermostats can run the system when you’re home and need the air conditioning. The system won’t run when you’re outside of the home during your weekly routines. And on days when you come home earlier than expected you can access the thermostat with your smartphone so your home will be cool upon your arrival. The opposite is also true, if you are out for an extended period of time and forget to turn off the AC you can turn it off by using your phone.
Tips That Don’t Require Money
- Reduce the amount of cool air circulating in the home. To run your AC economically you should have the thermostat set to around 23°C - close to the outdoor temperature. Keeping a moderate temperature will substantially help to lower energy cost. Remember to shut the AC off when you’re not home.
- Be aware of heat buildup from household appliances during the hottest part of the day. Run your dishwasher, washer and dryer in the evening when the outside temperatures begin to cool. Also use your barbecue when possible to avoid heat building up from the oven and stove
- Make sure your doors and windows are closed and have adequate seal. Allowing outdoor air inside can dramatically increase how often your AC is running and needed.
While on the topic, have a quick check of your ducts to confirm the cool AC air isn’t leaking out before reaching the intended target areas of the home.
- Close your curtains and lower blinds when the sun comes around to that side of the home, blackout curtains and blinds work best. You’ll also decrease the sun's ability to heat up your home with the use of outside awnings strategically placed to protect against the afternoon sun.
- Run your ceiling fans which will help circulate the cool air to all areas of each room.
- Replace older, outdated fluorescent lights which create much more heat than newer LED lights. Studies have shown that a 100 watt light produces a temperature of 168.5°C compared to the temperature of LED lights which burn at 30.6°C.
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